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Iodine Nasal Spray and Mouthwash May Protect Healthworkers

The use of Povidone-Iodine Nasal Spray and Mouthwash during the current Covid-19 Pandemic  may protect healthcare workers and reduce cross infection.

Povidone-iodine (PVP-I) has a better anti-viral activity than other antiseptics, and has already been proven to be an effective virucide in vitro against severe acute respiratory syndrome and Middle East respiratory syndrome coronaviruses (SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV). Povidone iodine has been shown to be a safe therapy when inhaled nasally or gargled.

We propose that a protocolised nasal inhalation and oropharyngeal wash of PVP-I should be used in the current COVID-19 pandemic to limit the spread of SARS-CoV-2 from patients to healthcare workers (and vice versa) and thus reduce the incidence of COVID-19.

There should be regular use in patients with COVID-19 to limit upper respiratory SARS-CoV-2 contamination, but also use by healthcare workers prior to treating COVID 19 patients or performing procedures in and around the mouth/ nose during the pandemic, regardless of the COVID 19 status of the patient. Patients having such procedures should also be treated with PVP-I. The total iodine exposure proposed is within previously recorded safe limits in those without contraindications to its use.

Kirk-Bayley, Justin and Challacombe, Stephen and Sunkaraneni, Vishnu and Combes, James, The Use of Povidone Iodine Nasal Spray and Mouthwash During the Current Covid-19 Pandemic May Protect Healthcare Workers and Reduce Cross Infection. (March 28, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=

Justin Kirk-Bayley Royal Surrey County Hospital

Stephen Challacombe King’s College London

San Sunkaraneni Royal Surrey County Hospital

James Combes Defence Medical Services

This research is currently under review by SSRN

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