A prospective, randomized study of 500 consecutive emergency department patients with traumatic lacerations requiring sutures was performed comparing use of topical 1% povidone-iodine (Betadine®) and scrubbing with wound management by irrigation with normal saline without scrubbing. A 60-second wound irrigation and scrub with a 1% povidone-iodine solution was the only difference in treatment between the two groups. Data relating to risk factors such as age; degree of contamination; type of closure; ethanol intoxication; mechanism of injury; and bone, joint, or tendon involvement were analyzed. Wounds were classified as clean, infected, or purulent at follow-up examination. One hundred five patients were lost to follow-up. Of the 395 remaining patients, 122 were contacted by phone and were classified based on their description of the wound; 273 were classified at reexamination in the ED. Of 201 povidone-iodine group wounds, 11 became infected; two of them (5.4%) were purulent. Of 194 control wounds, 30 became infected, of which 12 (15.46%) were purulent (P < .01). These data suggest that use of a topical 1% povidone-iodine solution in traumatic lacerations prior to suturing reduces the incidence of wound infections.
- laceration, use of povidone-iodine
- povidone-iodine, laceration