Antimicrobial-Impregnated Gauze Helps Equine Wounds Heal

Using 0.2% PHMB-impregnated gauze reduced the growth of underlying bacteria commonly implicated in orthopedic wounds and infections of horses.
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Antimicrobial-Impregnated Gauze Helps Equine Wounds Heal
Using 0.2% PHMB-impregnated gauze reduced the growth of underlying bacteria commonly implicated in orthopedic wounds and infections of horses. | Photo: Alexandra Beckstett/The Horse
Equine practitioners commonly encounter traumatic wounds of distal limbs and joints.

“Wounds on the distal limbs of horses heal more slowly than wounds on other parts of the body because of a comparatively decreased blood supply, poor soft tissue coverage, and an increased incidence of bacterial contamination because of proximity to the ground,” explained Isabelle Kilcoyne, MVB, Dipl. ACVS, assistant professor in the University of California Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, during her presentation at the 2019 Annual Convention of the American Association of Equine Practitioners, held Dec. 7-11 in Denver.

Without appropriate infection control, even small traumatic wounds can be career-limiting or even life-threatening.

Polyhexamethylene biguanide (PHMB) is a synthetic compound with a chemical structure similar to broad-spectrum antimicrobial agents. This antibiotic kills bacteria by binding to the bacterial cell membrane causing lysis (disintegration by cell wall or membrane rupture) of the cells

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Written by:

Stacey Oke, MSc, DVM, is a practicing veterinarian and freelance medical writer and editor. She is interested in both large and small animals, as well as complementary and alternative medicine. Since 2005, she’s worked as a research consultant for nutritional supplement companies, assisted physicians and veterinarians in publishing research articles and textbooks, and written for a number of educational magazines and websites.

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