Betadine has a ciliotoxic effect on ciliated human respiratory cells

J. H. Kim, J. Rimmer, N. Mrad, S. Ahmadzada, R. J. Harvey

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    34 Citations (Scopus)


    Objective: This study investigated the effect of Betadine on ciliated human respiratory epithelial cells. Methods: Epithelial cells from human sinonasal mucosa were cultured at the air–liquid interface. The cultures were tested with Hanks' balanced salt solution containing 10 mM HEPES (control), 100 µM ATP (positive control), 5 per cent Betadine or 10 per cent Betadine (clinical dose). Ciliary beat frequency was analysed using a high-speed camera on a computer imaging system. Results: Undiluted 10 per cent Betadine (n = 6) decreased the proportion of actively beating cilia over 1 minute (p <0.01). Ciliary beat frequency decreased from 11.15 ± 4.64 Hz to no detectable activity. The result was similar with 5 per cent Betadine (n = 7), with no significant difference compared with the 10 per cent solution findings. Conclusion: Betadine, at either 5 and 10 per cent, was ciliotoxic. Caution should be applied to the use of topical Betadine solution on the respiratory mucosal surface.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)S45-S50
    Number of pages6
    JournalJournal of Laryngology and Otology
    Issue numberSuppl. S1
    Publication statusPublished - 2015


    • betadine
    • povidone-iodine
    • ciliary beat frequency
    • air liquid interface
    • respiratory epithelium
    • primary cell culture
    • cilia


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