The reduction of bacteria in the operation room through the use of non-woven clothing

Whyte, W. , Hodgson, R., Bailey, P. V. and Graham, J. (1978) The reduction of bacteria in the operation room through the use of non-woven clothing. British Journal of Surgery, 65(7), pp. 469-474. (doi: 10.1002/bjs.1800650708) (PMID:667541)

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Operation room clothing manufactured from disposable non‐woven fabric (Barrier ‘450’ fabric supplied by Johnson & Johnson Ltd) was assessed in a dispersal chamber and in plenum‐ventilated operation rooms. If proved to be very comfortable to wear and was shown to be equally effective bacteriologically as the closely woven and uncomfortably hot Ventile material. As the majority of bacteria are known to be generated from below the waist, and hence not contained by an operation room gown, trousers were used as well as gowns. Dispersal chamber experiments suggested that when all staff wore non‐woven trousers and the scrubbed staff wore gowns as well, a 55 per cent reduction would be achieved in the number of bacterial particles in the air of an operation room. In practice, 60 per cent reduction was achieved in one operation room and 43 per cent in another. The number of bacteria which could easily be removed from the surface of the gowns was surprisingly few. However, use of non‐woven, as compared to cotton, clothing reduced these surface bacteria by 50‐60 per cent. These bacteria would not be as easily dispersed into the air from the surface of non‐woven gowns, as it was demonstrated that non‐woven gowns, as well as gowns manufactured from certain artificial fibres, shed substantially fewer fibres.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Whyte, Dr William
Authors: Whyte, W., Hodgson, R., Bailey, P. V., and Graham, J.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering
Journal Name:British Journal of Surgery
ISSN (Online):1365-2168

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