Making Boo-Boos Better

Wound-tending more important than choice of antibiotic: study

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Joseph V. Madia, MD

(RxWiki News) Cleaning, dressing, draining and caring for wounds may be more important the choice of antibiotic given to children, according to a new study.

Researchers from Johns Hopkins Children's Center set out to compare the efficiency of two common antibiotics used to treat staph skin infections and found that drug choice didn't appear to matter as 95 percent of the children involved in the study recovered completely in a week. (Among 191 children ages 6 months to 18 years, some were randomly assigned cephalexin, a classic anti-staph antibiotic, while others were assigned to clindamycin, known to work better against the resistant strains, such as MRSA.)

No matter which antibiotic was administered, nearly all skin infections cleared within a week, said study lead Aaron Chen, M.D., an emergency physician at Hopkins Children's. He said plain old proper wound care is most vital to healing: thorough cleaning, draining and dressing of the wound.

Once a wound has been cleaned thoroughly with soap and water and bleeding has ceased, make sure to treat with antiseptic ointment and cover lightly with a clean, adhesive bandage. Repeat this process often, according to standard first aid protocol. It may also be imperative to see a physician to prescribe antibiotics to avoid further complications.

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Review Date: 
February 22, 2011
Last Updated:
February 22, 2011