Introduction: Various disinfectants, such as povidone iodine (PVI)1, alcohol preparations, and chlorhexidine gluconate ethanol (CHG-ALC), are used for disinfection prior to blood sampling for culture. Methods: This retrospective cohort study compared the usefulness and effectiveness of CHG-ALC and PVI in pediatric venipuncture. We applied 0.5% w/v CHG-ALC or 10% PVI as an antiseptic for phlebotomies on pediatric outpatients and inpatients with suspected bacterial infection between November 2017 and April 2019. We conducted logistic regression analysis to define the differences associated with the choice of disinfectant, collection site, and the staff member collecting the blood sample (explanatory variables) and the presence of contamination (objective variable). Based on these results, we performed propensity score matching. Results: The total number of specimens was 1460. The propensity score matching indicated that CHG-ALC reduced the incidence of blood culture contamination more effectively than PVI (0.4%, 2/479 cultures versus 2.5%, 12/479 cultures; relative risk, 0.163 [95% confidence interval, 0.036 to 0.733]; P = 0.012). There were no differences in the contamination rates between cultures of blood drawn from a vascular catheter and those of blood obtained percutaneously. Higher contamination rates were found when junior residents performed the venipuncture. Conclusions: Compared with PVI, CHG-ALC dries rapidly with no pigmentation and has a long-lasting antiseptic effect. Overall, CHG-ALC skin preparations were more efficacious than the PVI preparations for blood sampling in children.
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