Silver Sulfadiazine Burn Ointment

Although major burns create a serious medical crisis, most of the burn patients die of infections rather than burns. Fox, a bacteriologist in a surgical unit, combined two known antibacterial agents for burns, silver nitrate and sulfadiazine, to create a synergistic compound that is extremely effective against infection. Silver sulfadiazine burn ointment was licensed to Marion Laboratories in 1969 following a clinical trial to prove efficacy.

Silver sulfadiazine quickly became the drug of choice due to its effectiveness at controlling bacterial infection and pain-free application. Produced as a water-soluble ointment, silver sulfadiazine was first employed on a large scale during the Vietnam War.

The U.S. patent for silver sulfadiazine issued in September 1973.


Dr. Charles L. Fox Jr. (deceased) at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons