Clinical Microbiology and Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. 2020; 22(1):30-38
This review summarizes published data on the use of chlorhexidine for the prevention of nosocomial infections in the intensive care units (ICU). The use of a 0.5–2.0% alcohol solution of chlorhexidine is strongly recommended for the surgical site decontamination before surgical intervention or vascular puncture for the prevention of surgical site infections and catheter-associated bloodstream infections. The following measures could be considered: daily skin decontamination with water solution of chlorhexidine (chlorhexidine bathing) in ICU for the prevention of catheter-associated bloodstream infection; the use of impregnated with chlorhexidine dressing for the prevention of catheter-associated bloodstream infections and catheter colonization; cleaning of the urinary meatus with water solution of chlorhexidine for the prevention of catheter-associated urinary tract infections. A routine use of chlorhexidine solution for oral care to prevent ventilator-associated pneumonia is not reasonable. The risks of contact dermatitis, anaphylaxis and emergence of chlorhexidine-resistant microorganisms should be considered when using chlorhexidine.