Article: Volume 48 Number 3 Page 207 - March 2021

  Dent Update 2021; 48: 207-211  Read article

Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery:  Bismuth iodoform paraffin paste: history, uses and alternatives in oral and maxillofacial surgery

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Abstract: Bismuth iodoform paraffin paste (BIPP) continues to be widely used in dental/oral and maxillofacial/ENT surgery for surgical cavity packing and wound dressing where pressure, antisepsis and haemostasis is required. We present information on its history and uses, including historical use, constituents, uses in surgery, risks and considerations for deciding on its use. Although side effects and adverse reactions have been reported, these are rare.

Clinical relevance: BIPP is commonly used in surgical procedures and an appreciation of its background, history, uses and side effects are important as well as an understanding of its alternatives.

Author notes: Gurpreet Kaur Randhawa, BDS(Hons) MFDS, RCS(Ed), Dental Core Trainee, North Manchester General Hospital. Richard M Graham, BDS, FDSRCS(Eng), MBChB, MRCS(Ed), FRCS(OMFS)(Ed), Consultant Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, North Manchester General Hospital. Karanveer Singh Matharu, BDS(Hons) MFDS RCS(Ed), Dental Core Trainee, Northwick Park Hospital, London email:

Objective: The reader should appreciate the history and use of BIPP in oral and maxillofacial/ENT procedures today.