Polihexanide

Author: Prof. Dr. med. Peter Altmeyer

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Last updated on: 29.10.2020

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Synonym(s)

CAS No: 28757-48.4; PHMB; Polyhexamethylene biguanide; Polyhexanide; Polyhexanides

Definition
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Polihexanide is an odourless and well-tolerated biguanide antiseptic related to chlorhexidine, which is used in medicine to treat large wounds. Furthermore, it is increasingly used in the cosmetic industry as a preservative. Another field of application is treatment in the oral cavity and the conjunctiva.

Pharmacodynamics (Effect)
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Polihexanide is characterized by a wide range of efficacy, including against enterococci and methicillin-resistant staphylococci (MRSA). Polyhexanide achieves its disinfecting effect by binding to the cell walls of the pathogens and irreversibly damaging them. Polyhexanide has a bactericidal effect even in very low concentrations. The effect occurs more slowly than with antiseptics such as octenidine, chlorhexidine or povidone-iodine.

Field of application/use
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Adjuvant antiseptic treatment of wounds, e.g. after surgical debridement. Also for surface and instrument disinfection, as a swimming pool cleaner and as a disinfectant for contact lens cleaning products. Usual concentration: 0.01-0.04%, in pharmaceuticals up to 0.1%.

Undesirable effects
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Both Type I and Type IV sensitization can occur. Contact allergic dermatitis, contact urticaria, anaphylactic system reactions after local application are described.

Recipe(s)
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Preparations
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Lavanid® wound irrigation solution, Lavanid® wound gel, Lavasept® , Lavasorb® wound irrigation solution, Lysoform®

Literature
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  1. Creytens K et al(2014) Contact urticaria syndrome caused by polyaminopropyl biguanide in wipes for intimate hygiene. Contact dermatitis 71:307-309.
  2. Kautz O et al.(2010) Severe anaphylaxis to the antiseptic polyhexanide. Allergy 65:1068-1070.
  3. Laughing band JM (2014) A comparison of the irritant and allergenic properties of antiseptics. Eur J Dermatol 24:3-9.
  4. Olivieri J et al (1998) Severe anaphylaxis to a new disinfectant: polyhexanide, a chlorhexidine polymer. Switzerland Med Weekly 128:1508-1511.

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Last updated on: 29.10.2020