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Q In patients presenting to the emergency department (ED) with simple lacerations, is wound irrigation with tap water equivalent to irrigation with sterile saline for wound infections?
randomised controlled trial.
blinded (outcome assessors).
5–14 days after wound closure.
2 urban trauma centres and 1 suburban community hospital in the US.
713 patients >17 years of age who presented to the ED with acute uncomplicated skin lacerations requiring staples or sutures. Exclusion criteria were puncture or bite wounds; self inflicted wounds; grossly contaminated wounds; wounds >8 hours old; wounds involving tendon, joint, or bone; diabetes; significant peripheral vascular disease; HIV or immunocompromised conditions; use of antibiotics or corticosteroids; or pregnancy. …
For correspondence: Dr R M Moscati, State University of New York at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY, USA.
Sources of funding: in part, Federal Highway Administration through the Center for Transportation Injury Research and Calspan University at Buffalo Research Center.