Skin Preparation Prior to Epidural Anesthesia: Chlorhexidine
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Infection in the epidural space is rare but if it occurs, it is a serious complication of epidural catheter placement. This study aimed to compare 0.5% chlorhexidine and 10% povidone iodine in preventing bacterial colonization of epidural catheters in patients who are undergoing treatment.

A randomized, single-blind, controlled trial was performed to 52 subjects who underwent epidural anesthesia or a combination of general and epidural anesthesia. Subjects were divided into a control group (10% povidone iodine) and an intervention group (0.5% clorhexidine in 70% alcohol). Examination of the epidural catheter (3-4 cm) tip culture was done on the 3rd day after installation.

Chi-square test showed that the effectiveness in preventing bacterial colonization in epidural catheters of chlorhexidine 0.5% in 70% alcohol did not differ significantly compared to povidone iodine 10%. Positive bacterial cultures on chlorhexidine 0.5% and povidone iodine 10% each in 13% of 23 epidural catheters were observed.

The effectiveness of 0.5% chlorhexidine in 70% alcohol compared to 10% povidone iodine did not differ significantly in preventing bacterial colonization in epidural catheters.

source: https://www.longdom.org/open-access/skin-preparation-prior-to-epidural-anesthesia-chlorhexidine-or-povidone-iodine.pdf
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