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Silver Sulfadiazine Burn Ointment

Although major burns create serious medical crises, most burn deaths are attributable to infections rather than the burns themselves. Dr. Charles L. Fox Jr., 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 clinical trials to prove its 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 was issued in September 1973.


Dr. Charles L. Fox Jr. (deceased) at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York, NY.