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Comparative in Vitro Activity of Antiseptics and Disinfectants Versus Clinical Isolates of Candida Species

  • Jan Silverman (a1) (a2), Jose A. Vazquez (a2) (a3), Jack D. Sobel (a2) and Marcus J. Zervos (a1) (a2)



To evaluate the in vitro activity of antiseptics and detergents against Candida.


One strain each of Candida albicans, Candida tropicalis, Candida lusitaniae, Candida parapsilosis, Candida kefyr, Candida glabrata, and an American Type Culture Collection strain of Escherichia coli (control) were studied. Clinical isolates were obtained from patients in a bone marrow unit of a large tertiary hospital. Antiseptic and disinfectant agents studied were used in the hospital where isolates were identified for cleaning of inanimate surfaces or hand washing. In vitro susceptibility was determined using a broth macrodilution method with exposure times to antiseptic or disinfectant agent of 15 seconds to 4 minutes and concentrations of agents that ranged from undiluted to 1:10,000 dilution.


A 900-bed teaching hospital.


Of disinfectants tested, Vestal and Sparquat inhibited growth of all species at dilutions of ≤1:100 at all contact times for all species. Clorox showed inhibition of growth at 1:100 dilution after 30 seconds of contact time for all isolates. Of antiseptics studied, Hibiclens inhibited growth of all species except C tropicalis at dilutions of ≤1:100 at all contact times and for C tropicalis after 60 seconds. Clinidine inhibited growth of all species at dilutions of ≤1:100 at all contact times for all species with the exception of C glabrata and C tropicalis, which grew at the undiluted concentration. Ultradex failed to demonstrate killing of any species for any dilutions tested.


The results of this study show varying degrees of in vitro inhibition of growth by a variety of antiseptics and disinfectants against clinical isolates of Candida species from hospitalized patients.


Corresponding author

William Beaumont Hospital, 3601 W 13 Mile Rd, Royal Oak, MI 48073


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