The present study was undertaken to find an antibiotic mixture which would rapidly and completely sterilize a heavily contaminated allograft heart valve without reducing its viability. Two different antibiotic combinations were used; formula A was used for 66 valves and formula B for 60 valves. Viability of the valves was assessed by autoradiography and tissue culture, and was found to be similar in both formulae. Formula B proved more effective; all valves were sterile after 24 hours' exposure to the antibiotics and remained so thereafter.
The period of viability was greatly extended when a nutrient medium was used to store the valves.
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