Ethyl Chloride Improves Antiseptic Effect of Betadine Skin Preparation for Office Procedures


To determine if ethyl chloride is an effective disinfectant alone or combined with povidone iodine in a clinical setting, 35 volunteers had different portions of their knees swabbed with sterile cotton-tip applicators after an area of skin was prepared with either ethyl chloride alone, povidone iodine alone, or povidone iodine followed by ethyl chloride. An area with no preparation at all served as the control. Specimens were then cultured on agar plates and bacterial growth assessed. When the data was categorized as colony forming units (CFUs) or no CFUs, both ethyl chloride and povidone iodine used alone had significantly fewer specimens with CFUs (p D 0.001) than controls, but were not significantly different from each other (p D 0.18). Additionally, the combination of povidone iodine followed by ethyl chloride spray had significantly fewer samples with CFUs than either product used alone (p D 0.001). In addition to its local anesthetic properties, ethyl chloride may be an effective disinfectant alone and may improve skin disinfection when used with povidone iodine compared to povidone iodine alone. (Journal of Surgical Orthopaedic Advances 21(2):84–87, 2012)

SKU: JSOA-2012-21-2-SU3 Categories: , Tags: , , ,

Frederick M. Azar, MD; Jason E. Lake, MD; Sean P. Grace, MD; Brian Perkinson, MD