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What is Iodosorb®?

By Debra Durkee
Updated Mar 03, 2024
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Iodosorb® is an iodine-based ointment used in the cleaning and sterilizing of shallow wounds. It is typically used in long-term situations where the wound keeps opening or reappearing, as in the case of sores or ulcers. Available as an ointment or a powder, its main use is as an antibacterial agent that can be used with regular wrappings and compression bandages.

The product gets its name from a combination of the active ingredient iodine and the process by which it works. As an absorbent, it draws bacteria and other microscopic foreign matter out of a wound, helping to keep it sterile while it heals. Usually only applied to wounds or sores a few millimeters deep, it acts only on the surface area that it touches.

Iodosorb® works best when the area of the wound is thoroughly cleaned before application. This typically means being flushed with water before the gel or ointment is placed on a piece of gauze or bandage and then applied over the damp wound. Not rubbing it directly onto the wound avoids putting additional pressure or friction on the area. Once the bandage is secured to the area with another wrapping, it should be kept as dry and clean as possible. Usually Iodosorb® can work for up to three days, but the bandage should always be kept clean and fresh to help the healing process.

When first administered to a wound, Iodosorb® is brown. After it has absorbed bacteria and infection from the wound, it will begin to change to a yellowish hue. When this happens, it is time to change the gel to ensure maximum protection against infection. As the ointment bears a time-release component triggered by the presence of the wound and the bacteria, it can remain active for days after being applied.

Iodosorb® can bring about an allergic reaction in individuals sensitive to iodine. Others may still have an allergic reaction to the medication, so the site of application should be monitored for signs of a rash, irritation, swelling, or spreading redness. In addition to the ointment, it is also available in a powder that can be put directly onto the open wound as well as in a dressing. The dressing already has the medication in it, and it can simply be placed over the wound for an easy application.

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