Sterile water is a medical product that has been treated to eliminate all bacteria, viruses, and contaminants. It contains no minerals or additives. Some of the uses of sterile water include thinning medications used for inhalation therapy, irrigating catheters, and moistening wound dressings. However, not all sterile water is the same and they each serve different purposes. It is important to read product labels carefully and follow your doctor's instructions.
Saline Solution differs from sterile water in that it contains sodium chloride, more commonly known as salt. This product is often used to restore moisture to various parts of the body, including eyes, nasal passages, and the throat. Saline is also used to flush debris and other contaminants from wounds without causing pain. Applying saline to gauze bandages or dressings is a sanitary way to keep a wound moist.