Nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal rinses with neutral electrolyzed water prevents COVID-19 in front-line health professionals: A randomized, open-label, controlled trial in a general hospital in Mexico City

Biomed Rep. 2022 Feb;16(2):11. doi: 10.3892/br.2021.1494. Epub 2021 Dec 15.


The worldwide efforts that healthcare professionals are making in the COVID-19 pandemic is well known, and the high risk of illness and death that front-line staff experience on a daily basis is a reality, despite well-defined protocols for the use of personal protective equipment. In addition, it is well known that vaccination is still faraway to be achieved worldwide and that new variants are emerging, thus additional protective measures must be explored. A prospective open-label randomized controlled clinical trial was performed on front-line medical staff from the Dr. Enrique Cabrera General Hospital in México City to evaluate the effectiveness of nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal rinses with a neutral electrolyzed water, known as SES, to reduce the risk of COVID-19 disease among front-line, not vaccinated medical staff. A total of 170 volunteers were enrolled and equally divided in a control group and SES group. All members of the trial wore the adequate personal protection equipment at all times while performing their duties, as required by standard COVID-19 safety protocols. Additionally, the SES group participants followed a prophylactic protocol with SES (oral and nasal rinses, three times a day for 4 weeks). All participants were monitored for COVID-19 symptoms and disease in a time-frame of 4 weeks and the incidence of illness per group was registered. The relative risk of disease, associated with each treatment was calculated. The presence of COVID-19-positive cases, in the group that received the nasal and oral rinses with SES was 1.2%, while in the group that did not do the SES rinses (control group), it was 12.7% (P=0.0039 and RR=0.09405; 95% CI of 0.01231-0.7183). The prophylactic protocol was demonstrated as a protective factor, in more than 90%, for developing the disease, and without adverse effects. Nasal and oral rinses with SES may be an efficient alternative to reinforce the protective measures against COVID-19 disease and should be further investigated. The present clinical trial was retrospectively registered in the Cuban public registry of clinical trials (RPCEC) database (March 16, 2021; PREVECOVID-19: RPCEC00000357).

Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; mouthwashes; nasal rinses; neutral electrolyzed water; prophylaxis.

Grants and funding

Funding: No funding was received.