chlorhexidine gluconate oral rinse (Peridex, Periogard, Periochip)

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

What is chlorhexidine-topical(mucous membrane), and how does it work (mechanism of action)?

Chlorhexidine is an antiseptic and antimicrobial oral rinse. It provides protection against a wide range of bacteria. It kills bacteria by binding to bacteria cell walls. The FDA approved chlorhexidine in August 1986.

What brand names are available for chlorhexidine-topical(mucous membrane)?

Peridex, Periogard, Periochip

Is chlorhexidine-topical(mucous membrane) available as a generic drug?


Do I need a prescription for chlorhexidine-topical(mucous membrane)?


What are the side effects of chlorhexidine-topical(mucous membrane)?

Side effects of chlorhexidine include:

  • staining of the teeth and other oral areas,
  • dental tartar (dental calculus),
  • altered sense of taste,
  • toothache, and
  • oral mucosal irritation.

Cases of parotid gland swelling and inflammation of the salivary glands (sialadenitis) have been reported.

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