Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci 2015; 19 (7): 1321-1326

Chlorhexidine – pharmaco-biological activity and application

T.M. Karpiński, A.K. Szkaradkiewicz

Department of Medical Microbiology, University of Medical Sciences in Poznań, Poland.

OBJECTIVES: Chlorhexidine (CHX) is one of the most widely used antiseptic, especially in dentistry. At low concentrations CHX is bacteriostatic and at high concentrations acts bactericidal causing cell death by cytolysis. In this study, we performed a systematic review of pharmaco-biological activity and application of CHX.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Articles for inclusion in this review were retrieved from online databases PubMed/Medline. The selected papers were included in the present manuscript according to their relevance for the topic.

RESULTS: Totally 75 papers were enrolled in this research. CHX has strong biocidal activity against Gram-positive bacteria and weaker activity against Gram-negative bacteria. It is also active against yeasts, some dermatophytes and some lipophilic viruses. The most widely application CHX has found in dentistry and antisepsis. Numerous studies have confirmed the beneficial effects of CHX in reducing of plaque accumulation, in tooth caries, gingivitis, periodontitis and in alveolar osteitis. Unfortunately, CHX exhibits cytotoxic activity on human cells, can cause colorization of teeth and fillings, and its activity depends on the pH of the environment and the presence of organic substances.

CONCLUSIONS: CHX play a valuable role in the dentistry and antisepsis. However, it can also cause side effects, limiting its application time.

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To cite this article

T.M. Karpiński, A.K. Szkaradkiewicz
Chlorhexidine – pharmaco-biological activity and application

Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci
Year: 2015
Vol. 19 - N. 7
Pages: 1321-1326