Ethanol-based Cleanser Versus Isopropyl Alcohol To Decontaminate Stethoscopes

Title

Ethanol-based Cleanser Versus Isopropyl Alcohol To Decontaminate Stethoscopes

Creator

Lecat P; Cropp E; McCord G; Haller N A

Publisher

American Journal of Infection Control

Date

2009
2009-04

Description

Approximately 1 in 20 hospital admissions is complicated by a health care-associated infection. Stethoscopes may play a role in spreading nosocomial infections. The objective of this study was to determine the effectiveness of an ethanol-based cleanser (EBC) compared with isopropyl alcohol pads in reducing bacterial contamination of stethoscope diaphragms. Stethoscopes were cultured from medical professionals on 4 medical floors before and after cleaning with either EBC or isopropyl alcohol pads. The numbers of colony-forming units (cfu) grown were compared between the 2 cleaners and to baseline values. A total of 99 stethoscopes were cultured (49 EBC: 50 isopropyl alcohol), and all were positive for growth. After cleaning, 28.28% of the stethoscopes were growth-free (12 EBC; 16 isopropyl alcohol). Cleaning with EBC and isopropyl alcohol pads significantly reduced the cfu counts (by 92.8% and 92.5%, respectively), but neither was found to be statistically superior (F = 1.22; P = .2721). Cleaning a stethoscope diaphragm using either EBC or isopropyl alcohol led to a significant reduction in bacterial growth in culture. As an extension of the hand, a stethoscope should be cleaned with the same frequency as the hands. The simultaneous cleaning of hands and stethoscope may further increase compliance with current standards. Copyright (c) 2009 by the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology, Inc.

Subject

Environmental & Occupational Health; infection; Infectious Diseases; potential source; Public

Format

Journal Article or Conference Abstract Publication

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Rights

Article information provided for research and reference use only. All rights are retained by the journal listed under publisher and/or the creator(s).

Pages

241-243

Issue

3

Volume

37

Citation

Lecat P; Cropp E; McCord G; Haller N A, “Ethanol-based Cleanser Versus Isopropyl Alcohol To Decontaminate Stethoscopes,” NEOMED Bibliography Database, accessed September 20, 2021, https://neomed.omeka.net/items/show/10676.

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