The Increasing Use of Silver-based Products as Antimicrobial Agents
In this interesting review of clinical literature, published in August 2015 in the Oxford Journal’s Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy (Vol. 59, Issue 4, Pp. 587-590), the author discusses the idea that while clinical incidence of silver resistance among bacteria remains quite low (with a meager 20 clinical examples since 1975), several important standards for the use of antimicrobial silver in wound dressings need to be developed in order to make sure the clinical threat of silver resistance remains low.
The author discussed the need for the development of standardized testing methods for determining antimicrobial silver’s MIC values (i.e., minimum inhibitory concentration values) in wound dressings. He also discussed the need for the development of recognized breakpoints and of the need to determine the best methods of release of silver ions for maximum effectiveness. The author concluded that wound dressings that release low levels of silver ions are more likely to contribute to additional incidences of silver resistance in the future than products that release higher levels of silver ions and thus exhibit a faster and more efficient rate of bactericidal activity. According to the study author, “In order to minimize the risk of silver resistance, clinicians should choose dressings that release high levels of silver ions and that demonstrate rapid bactericidal activity.”
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