Effects of Daily Oral Care with 0.12% Chlorhexidine Gluconate and a Standard Oral Care Protocol on the Development of Nosocomial Pneumonia in Intubated Patients: A Pilot Study
Source: Journal of Dental Hygiene, Number 3, Summer 1st July 2006 , pp. 9-9(1)
Publisher: American Dental Hygienists' Association
Abstract:Purpose. The purpose of this pilot study was to determine if a difference existed between nosocomial pneumonia rates for intubated critical care unit (CCU) patients who received twice-daily oral hygiene care with 0.12% chlorhexidine gluconate and those who received the standard oral care.
Methods. Over seven months (February to August), CCU patients were identified through screening and informed consent procedures, and randomized into 1 of 2 groups. Over the 7 months, due to the critically ill nature of the patients, only 5 subjects were enrolled. While in the study, twice-daily oral hygiene care consisted of brushing the cheeks, teeth, and endotracheal tube with a suctioning toothbrush using an FDA-approved 0.12% chlorhexidine gluconate antimicrobial agent with the experimental group (2 intubated patients in the CCU). The control group (3 intubated patients in the CCU) received the standard oral care 6 times per day utilizing a soft foam swab and half strength hydrogen peroxide. All oral care was performed by the nursing staff. The number of persons developing nosocomial pneumonia was monitored until hospital discharge.
Results. Results revealed that 1 person out of 3 in the control group was discharged from the hospital with a diagnosis of nosocomial (aspiration) pneumonia. Neither of the 2 subjects in the experimental group was diagnosed with nosocomial pneumonia. Preliminary findings suggest that twice-daily oral hygiene care with 0.12% chlorhexidine gluconate may reduce the risk of nosocomial pneumonia in intubated patients more than the 6-times daily standard oral care protocol. The standard oral care protocol does not include the use of an FDA-approved antimicrobial solution. However, the small size of the sample makes this finding inconclusive.
Conclusion. Twice-daily oral hygiene care with 0.12% chlorhexidine gluconate may hold promise as a nosocomial pneumonia reduction strategy within hospital CCUs; however, its application requires further testing.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: 1: Recent graduate MSDH Program, Gene W. Hirschfeld School of Dental Hygiene, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA 2: Eminent scholar and graduate program director, Gene W. Hirschfeld School of Dental Hygiene, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA. 3: Adjunct research assistant professor, Gene W. Hirschfeld School of Dental Hygiene, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA. 4: Associate Professor, Department of Nursing, Troy University-Atlantic Region, Norfolk, VA; Former associate professor, Department of Nursing, Christopher Newport University, Newport News, VA.
Publication date: 2006-06-01