Author(s): Prabhu Thilaak1, Senthil M2, Deepika A3, Indra Priyadharsini4
BACKGROUND Invasive skin pathogens play an important role in the occurrence of infections. Intravascular catheters which are commonly used in the hospitals for patient care can lead to serious infectious complications. Use of an antiseptic solution for disinfecting the skin at the catheter insertion site helps to prevent catheter-related infections.
Cleaning of the skin with antiseptics before the surgical or cutaneous intervention clearly reduces the infection risk.
To compare the efficacy of chlorhexidine 2% and povidone-iodine 10% in preventing catheter-related blood stream infections.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
A prospective comparative study was conducted for a period of 2 months in our hospital. 100 patients who were posted for elective surgeries under epidural anaesthesia (epidural catheters) were included in our study. The patients were divided into two groups of 50 each. For group I patients, chlorhexidine was used and for group II patients, povidone-iodine was used as an antiseptic solution over the area of catheter insertion. Totally, two skin swabs were obtained from the patients in each group, one before cleansing and the other one subsequently after cleansing the area where catheter was inserted.
Before the antiseptic painting at the catheter site the most common organism found was CoNS, followed by micrococcus and few Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacilli among both the groups and the colonies had shown between poor-to-moderate growth. After painting the disinfectant, no organism was detected in both the chlorhexidine group and the povidone-iodine group. The povidone-iodine takes a longer time to dry when compared to chlorhexidine and the difference was found to be statistically significant.
CONCLUSION It is recommended that either of the two agents can be used before conducting procedures such as catheterisation or venous puncture. Chlorhexidine 2%, due to its significantly shorter contact time, may be of value in emergency situations.