Merck Manual

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Topical Agents

Topical Agents

Topical Agent

Indications and Characteristics

Granulated sugar

  • Inflammatory to early repair phase

  • Hyperosmotic

  • Requires frequent bandage changes

Honey

  • Inflammatory to early repair phase

  • Hyperosmotic effect may damage healthy tissue

  • Requires frequent bandage changes

Silver

  • Inflammatory and repair phases

  • No clinical evidence of resistance

Antibiotics

  • Inflammatory and repair phases

  • Broad spectrum

  • May also supply zinc to the wound environment

Enzymatic agents

  • Inflammatory phase

  • Slow

  • Expensive

Biologic (maggots)

  • Inflammatory phase

  • Selective debridement

  • Requires specialized dressing to contain the maggots