Original Article

The Comparative Efficacy of Tea Tree Oil Body Wash versus Chlorhex-idine Body Wash to Prevent Colonization with Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus in a Pediatric Unit


Background: Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) stands for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, a type of bacteria that is resistant to several antibiotics. Non-intact skin, such as when there are abrasions or incisions, is often the site of an MRSA infection. MRSA has become endemic in hospitals over the past years. The current recommendation for MRSA decolonization is to use a daily chlorohexidine skin wash for five days. Tea Tree Oil (TTO) can also be considered for the eradication of MRSA on the skin. However, no study has evaluated the TTO potential for MRSA decolonization in hospitalized children. Methods:In this single-center, comparative prospective, open-label clinical trial, the effect of TTO body wash on MRSA decolonization was compared to that of chlorhexidine body wash at Loghman-e-Hakim Hospital (Tehran, Iran). Several samples were taken from the catheter sites of children for MRSA detection. Patients were assigned to receive either TTO or chlorhexidine. After five days of applying the solutions, resampling was conducted to assess the colonization of MRSA. Results: Both TTO and chlorhexidine groups showed favorable results for MRSA decolonization. From 382 patients, 91 were MRSA-positive (about 23.82%), and of these 91 patients, 41 (45%) were female and 59 (55%) were male. The mean ± SD of the growth inhibition zone against MRSA was 19.20 ± 3.73 and 33.41 ± 9.53 for chlorhexidine and TTO, respectively. Conclusion: TTO body wash proved to be more effective than chlorhexidine in MRSA decolonization in hospitalized children. Implementation of such decolonization can improve patients’ outcomes and prevent MRSA transmission.

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IssueVol 11, No 2 (Spring 2023) QRcode
SectionOriginal Article(s)
DOI https://doi.org/10.18502/jpc.v11i2.13362
Tea Tree Oil; Hospital-Acquired Infection; Chlorhexidine; Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococ-cus aureus

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Rahbari S, Rajabi M, Pournasiri Z. The Comparative Efficacy of Tea Tree Oil Body Wash versus Chlorhex-idine Body Wash to Prevent Colonization with Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus in a Pediatric Unit. J Pharm Care. 2023;11(2):74-81.