An in vitro investigation into the efficacies of chlorhexidine gluconate, povidone iodine and green tea (Camellia sinensis) to prevent surgical site infection in animals
Background:Surgical site infections are common in veterinary practice; their prevention is based on the preoperative use of topical antimicrobials at the surgical site to reduce resident bacteria to sub-pathogenic levels.AimChlorhexidine gluconate (CHG) and povidone iodine (PI) are the most popular options for preoperative skin preparation in veterinary practice, however increasing bacterial resistance to CHG and PI have been reported; therefore investigation into alternative antimicrobials such as Camellia sinensis (green tea: GT) is required.MethodThe Kirby-Bauer disk diffusion method was used to test the antibacterial activity of four dilutions of CHG, PI and GT on the normal flora of animal skin, represented by S. aureus, S. intermedius, S. uberis and S. pyogenes. Zones of inhibition (ZOI) were measured to assess antimicrobial action. Kruskal-Wallis analyses with Mann-Whitney post-hoc tests determined differences in efficacy between the dilutions of antimicrobials for each bacterium tested.ResultsAll antimicrobials inhibited bacterial growth, CHG was more efficacious than PI and GT (p<0.0001; mean CHG: 24.02± 2.05 mm; mean PI: 4.46±1.35 mm; mean GT: 2.90mm±2.60mm). Although GT produced smaller ZOIs than PI, no significant differences in efficacy existed (p>0.05).ConclusionThe results suggest that CHG is the best antimicrobial for preoperative skin preparation. GT did produce an antibacterial effect on three of the four bacteria, although this was inferior to the existing veterinary products used. Therefore GT in the formulation tested is not recommended for use as a veterinary antimicrobial.
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