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March 1972

Topical Protection Against Germicidal Radiation

Arch Surg. 1972;104(3):276-283. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1972.04180030024008

Twenty topically applied sunscreens were evaluated in their ability to block shortwave (254 nm) ultraviolet irradiation by measuring their ability to prevent erythema from developing on the germicidal lamp-exposed backs of volunteers in the laboratory and the operating room. The 2-hydroxy-4-methoxybenzophenone-5-sulfonic acid (10%) in cream base was found to be an excellent screen. This suggests that since the harmful effects of 254-nm radiation can be prevented and less cumbersome garb may be necessary in the operating theater, then the germicidal atmosphere may be more acceptable to the surgeon.