Andrés Anwandter; Cristóbal Lefno Diocares; Camila Valeria & Diego Robledo


It has been suggested that the use of oral antiseptics could reduce the viral load of SARS-CoV-2 virus in patients during dental care, but without evidence to support its effectiveness. The objective of this study was to determine the effectiveness of povidone iodine mouthwash in reducing the viral load of SARS-CoV-2 virus. A literature search was conducted in PubMed, Biblioteca Virtual enSalud, SciELO, Web of Science and EBSCOhost. Clinical studies in patients with COVID-19 or in vitro studies with SARS-CoV-2 strains that used povidone-iodine mouthwash as a form of intervention, published between January 2019 and January 2021, were included. The selection of articles was carried out in two phases by two authors independently. After removing duplicate articles, 53 references were kept. Finally, 2 in vivo studies and 5 in vitro studies were included for the qualitative review. In the in vitro studies, all concentrations of povidone iodine showed effective virucidal activity at the different exposure times, where the minimum effective concentration corresponded to 0.5 % in 15 seconds. In vivo studies showed positive results towards the use of povidone iodine, but with small sample sizes and great heterogeneity in their methodology. The prophylactic use of povidone iodine mouthwash against the SARS-CoV-2 virus is supported by in vitro studies, with application times easily achievable in dental care, but a large number of randomized controlled trials are required to verify its effectiveness in clinical practice.

KEY WORDS: COVID-19, povidone-iodine, mouthwashes, dental prophylaxis.

How to cite this article

ANWANDTER, A.; LEFNO-DIOCARES. C.; VALERIA, C. & ROBLEDO, D. Povidone iodine as an oral antiseptic in the reduction of SARS-CoV-2 viral load: Literature review. Int. J. Odontostomat., 15(4):997-1004, 2021.