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Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

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It is important to consider prevention of burn wound infection, particularly for:

  • extensive burns
  • deep burns
  • infection-prone wounds eg contaminated by dirt at presentation

There is great variability between unit recommendations for the use of antimicrobials and hence, it is always prudent to seek advice before administering.

The British Burn Association advises that a topical antimicrobial is applied to infection-prone wounds(1). A suitable antimicrobial is silver sulphadiazine or aqueous chlorhexidine. The antimicrobial is reapplied at each dressing change.

Commonly applied antimicrobials include:

  • silver sulphadiazine
  • silver nitrate
  • mafenide

However, each agent has a range of potential problems - see submenu.

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