Over-the-counter topical antimicrobials: Effective treatments?

Stephen C. Davis, Alejandro L. Cazzaniga, William H. Eaglstein, Patricia M. Mertz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


There are many over-the-counter (OTC) bandage products available. In addition to their direct purchase by the public, many physicians provide OTC bandages to their patents after minor surgeries. The aim of this study was to evaluate in a well established porcine model the efficacy against Staphylococcus aureus of four OTC antimicrobial containing bandages as compared to two OTC ointments. Multiple partial thickness wounds were made on the backs of four pigs. The wounds were treated within 20 min after S. aureus inoculation. The wounds were cultured quantitatively at 24 and 48 h. Only one of the antibiotic bandages and one of the topical ointments were effective in reducing S. aureus proliferation in partial thickness wounds. The two treatments that were effective were the only treatments that contained neomycin. Although many OTC bandages and ointments contain antimicrobials, they may not be effective at reducing bacteria in wounds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)190-195
Number of pages6
JournalArchives of Dermatological Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 1 2005


  • Antimicrobials
  • Bacteria
  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • Wounds

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology


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