ISSN 2398-2993      

Surgical asepsis and scrubbing

obovis

Introduction

  • Surgical asepsis and surgical scrubbing involve both preparation of the surgical site in the patient and of the surgical personnel. Both are equally important to ensure asepsis is maintained during surgery, no matter what procedure is being undertaken.
  • This article describes surgical preparation and scrub of the patient, surgical scrub and gloving of the surgeon and draping of the patient.
  • If the surgeon does not have a nurse, or assistant, present to scrub the patient on their behalf, then the patient should be clipped and scrubbed before the surgeon scrubs, gloves and gowns themselves.

Preparing the patient for surgery

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The WHO hand wash

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Surgical hand scrub

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Alternative products for surgical hand scrubbing

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Gloving

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Gowning

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Draping

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed Papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Privitera G P et al (2017) Skin antisepsis with chlorhexidine versus iodine for the prevention of surgical site infection: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Am J Infect Control 45 (2), 180-189 PubMed.
  • Tsai J C et al (2017) Antiseptic effect of conventional povidone–iodine scrub, chlorhexidine scrub, and waterless hand rub in a surgical room: A randomized controlled trial. Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 38 (4), 417-422 CambridgeUP.
  • Mann A (2016) In small animal surgery are alcoholic hand rubs superior to scrubbing brushes and antimicrobial soap at reducing bacterial counts? Vet Evidence 1 (4) VetEvidence
  • Davids B I, Davidson M J, TenBroeck S H et al (2015) Efficacy of mechanical versus non-mechanical sterile preoperative skin preparation with chlorhexidine gluconate 4% solution. Vet Surg 44 (5), 648-652 PubMed.
  • Yasuda T, Hasegawa T, Yamato Y et al (2015) Optimal timing of preoperative skin preparation with povidone-iodine for spine surgery: A prospective, randomized controlled study. Asian Spine J 9 (3), 423-426 PubMed.
  • Bourel C, Buczinski S, Desrochers A & Harvey D (2013) Comparison of two surgical site protocols for cattle in a field setting. Vet Surg 42 (2), 223-228 WileyOnline.
  • Verwilghen D R et al (2011) Surgical hand antisepsis in veterinary practice: evaluation of soap scrubs and alcohol based rub techniques. Vet J 190 (3), 372-377 PubMed.
  • Wilson D G et al (2011) Comparison of three preoperative skin preparation techniques in ponies. Equine Vet Educ 23 (9), 462-465 WileyOnline.

Other sources of information

  • Virox Animal Health (online) Disinfectant #14: Chlorhexidine: Safe for Humans, but at what Risk to the Environment. Website: https://info.virox.com (pdf download).

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