Infection prevention with long-term effect

Our skin and mucous membrane antisepsis

Disinfection of skin and mucous membranes prior to surgical interventions is one of the most elementary measures in the context of infection prevention. Aqueous products, such as our octenisept®, have long been established for disinfection of mucous membranes, while alcoholic products are ideally suited for skin disinfection.

Skin disinfection


Skin antisepsis is one of the most important standards for the prevention of surgical site infections (SSI) and catheter-related bloodstream infection (CRBSI). In general, preparations with a high alcohol content (≥ 60%) are used for skin antisepsis, which enable a microbial count reduction of 99 to 99.9% with short exposure times.

Long-term and residual effects of alcohol-based skin antiseptics

Langzeitwirkung und Remanenz alkoholbasierter Hautantiseptika

In German efficacy tests, preparations must not perform worse than the reference alcohol (70% 2-propanol) tested in parallel. The test method of the German Society for Hygiene and Microbiology (DGHM) of 1991 also required a long-term effect over 24 hours for the preparations in addition to the short-term effect. This long-term effect is based exclusively on the fact that the microbial growth is delayed after the alcohol content in the test or reference preparation has initially greatly reduced the microbial count.

Our products kodan® tincture forte coloured and kodan® tincture forte colourless naturally meet this requirement. kodan® tincture forte, for example, does not differ significantly from the reference alcohol in terms of its efficacy against resident skin flora on skin poor in sebaceous glands. Accordingly, kodan® tincture forte exhibits by definition a long-term effect over 24 hours.

In the current test methods of the German Society for Hygiene and Microbiology (DGHM) from 2002, proof of such a long-term effect over 24 hours is no longer included. The residual effect must be clearly distinguished from this long-term effect. This effect is achieved by active ingredients such as octenidine dihydrochloride (octenidine) or chlorhexidine. After the alcohol component has dried off, these active ingredients remain on the skin for a long time and continue during this time to exert their antimicrobial properties against resident and transient flora. After the alcohol has dried off, the microbial count is further reduced over time. Although the residual effect cannot be demonstrated by standardized test methods, it can be clearly demonstrated experimentally and clinically.

Octenidine in prevention of vascular catheter-associated infections


The use of products with a residual effect is particularly recommended for surgical interventions of long duration and those with a high risk of infection. In severe cases, infections associated with vascular and other access devices can develop into sepsis or septic shock. Here, intensive care patients are particularly at risk. To permanently reduce skin flora around the entry site of the catheter, an alcoholic skin antiseptic is recommended in combination with a long-acting active substance such as octenidine (e.g. octeniderm® colourless) before placing the catheter.

Clinical comparison shows that with its residual effect of 48 hours, octeniderm® colourless is more effective than pure alcoholic preparations or alcohol and benzalkonium chloride-based preparations. octeniderm® colourless achieves a persistent reduction in bacterial load, reducing the risk of catheter-associated infections.

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