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Effects of Sodium Hypochlorite (Dakin's Solution) on Wound Cells

Arch Surg. 1988;123(12):1526. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1988.01400360096021.
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To the Editor.—The study by Kozol and colleagues1 of the cellular effects of Dakin's solution reveals proficiency in the use of techniques for determining cellular viability and motility in vitro. The results of the study are consistent with what has become a maxim of wound healing: Substances introduced for the purpose of controlling bacterial growth in an open wound may damage or inhibit some of the endogenous elements therein. However, the success achieved with the use of topical antibacterial agents in lowering morbidity and mortality due to burn wound sepsis suggests that the authors have gone too far with their concluding generalization: "Normal saline remains the solution of choice for use in open wound care." As a first-line agent for inclusion in the dressings of major burn wounds, normal saline solution has been given up in favor of powerful topical antibacterial agents (0.5% silver nitrate solution, mafenide acetate,


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