Newly Published
Correspondence  |   August 2019
Chlorhexidine Inefficacy in Ventilated Patients: Comment
Author Notes
  • Weirton Medical Center, Weirton, West Virginia. kmpnpm@yahoo.com
  • (Accepted for publication July 1, 2019.)
    (Accepted for publication July 1, 2019.)×
Article Information
Correspondence
Correspondence   |   August 2019
Chlorhexidine Inefficacy in Ventilated Patients: Comment
Anesthesiology Newly Published on August 7, 2019. doi:10.1097/ALN.0000000000002925
Anesthesiology Newly Published on August 7, 2019. doi:10.1097/ALN.0000000000002925
The recent article by La Combe et al. is timely, directly challenging the practice of using oral chlorhexidine in intubated patients to reduce oral bacterial counts and ventilator-associated pneumonia.1  While documenting a lack of efficacy of chlorhexidine to reduce bacterial load in the oropharynx, they failed to address the specific known pulmonary toxicity of chlorhexidine or evaluate the direct toxic impact of chlorhexidine “silent aspiration” into the lung, leaking between endotracheal tube cuff and tracheal mucosa. This would have been of great interest, as specific toxicology concerns remain discounted and with their administration of the 15-ml volumes and 0.12% concentrations applied. The authors did indicate some studies that specifically linked oral chlorhexidine use to increased mortality.