Impact of non-rinse skin cleansing with chlorhexidine gluconate on prevention of healthcare-associated infections and colonization with multi-resistant organisms: a systematic review

Surendra Karki, Allen Cheuk-Seng Cheng

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70 Citations (Scopus)


Sixteen published studies and four conference abstracts were included for systematic review. Nine studies reported the impact of CHG on incidence of central-line-associated bloodstream infection (CLABSI); the incidence rate ratio (IRR) was 0.43 [95 confidence interval (CI): 0.26-0.71]. Five studies assessed the impact of CHG washcloths on incidence of surgical site infection (SSI); the RR was 0.29 (95 CI: 0.17-0.49). Four studies reported the impact on vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE) colonization; the IRR was 0.43 (95 CI: 0.32-0.59). Three studies reported the impact on meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) colonization rate; the IRR was 0.48 (95 CI: 0.24-0.95). Six studies reported the impact on VRE infection; the IRR was 0.90 (95 CI: 0.42-1.93). Six studies reported the impact on MRSA infection; the IRR was 0.82 (95 CI: 0.51-1.30). There was no reduction in acinetobacter infection rates in the three studies where this was reported. Conclusion: These results suggest that the use of non-rinse CHG application significantly reduces the risk of CLABSI, SSI and colonization with VRE or MRSA, but not infection.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71 - 84
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Hospital Infection
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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