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May 1990

Histotoxicity of Cyanoacrylate Tissue Adhesives: A Comparative Study

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (Drs Toriumi and Tardy), Department of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery, Eye and Ear Infirmary (Dr Friedman), and the Department of Pathology (Dr Raslan), University of Illinois at Chicago.

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1990;116(5):546-550. doi:10.1001/archotol.1990.01870050046004

• Cyanoacrylate derivatives have been used as surgical adhesives for many years. Shorter-chain derivatives (methyl- and ethyl-cyanoacrylate) have proved to be histotoxic. Longer-chain derivatives (butyl- and isobutyl-cyanoacrylate) are much less histotoxic. Many surgeons continue to use ethyl-2-cyanoacrylate (Krazy Glue) despite the availability of a less toxic derivative, butyl-2-cyanoacrylate (Histoacryl). In this study, the histotoxicity and bone graft—cartilage binding ability of Krazy Glue and Hlstoacryl were compared. Bone grafts harvested from the anterior wall of the maxillary sinus were placed in a subcutaneous pocket and glued to auricular cartilage in the rabbit. Krazy Glue and Histoacryl were used in opposite ears, harvesting specimens at 1, 2, 4, 12, 24, and 48 weeks. The Krazy Glue—treated ears developed seromas with histologic evidence of acute inflammation, tissue necrosis, and chronic foreign body giant cell reaction. The Hlstoacryl-treated ears showed mild acute inflammation and mild foreign body giant cell reaction. The Krazy Glue was completely degraded within 12 months, while some Histoacryl was still present at 1 year. Histoacryl had minimal histotoxic effect and good bone graft—cartilage binding ability, whereas Krazy Glue demonstrated severe histotoxicity.

(Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1990;116:546-550)

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