An antiseptic nasal spray containing povidone-iodine may help curb transmission of the new coronavirus, preliminary research suggests. In test tube experiments, a team of ear, nose and throat doctors found that a povidone-iodine nasal spray inactivated the virus in as little as 15 seconds. The nasal spray they tested is typically used to disinfect the inside of the nose before surgery.
Formulations designed for use on skin are not safe in the nose, the researchers note. They reported on Thursday in JAMA Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery that they now have their patients use the spray before intranasal procedures, to reduce the risk of virus transmission through the air via droplets and aerosol spread.