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Br J Nurs. 2008 Mar 13-26;17(5):316-20.

Sporicidal activity of two disinfectants against Clostridium difficile spores.

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  • 1University Hospital Birmingham, NHS Trust, Birmingham.


The sporicidal activity of an odour-free peracetic acid-based disinfectant (Wofasteril) and a widely-used dichloroisocyanurate preparation (Chlor-clean) was assessed against spores of the hyper-virulent strain of Clostridium difficile (ribotype 027), in the presence and absence of organic matter. In environmentally clean conditions, dichloroisocyanurate achieved a >3 log10 reduction in 3 minutes, but a minimum contact time of 9 minutes was required to reduce the viable spore load to below detection levels. Peracetic acid achieved a >3 log10 reduction in 30 minutes and was overall significantly less effective (P<0.05). However, in the presence of organic matter - which reflects the true clinical environment - there was no significant difference between the sporicidal activity of dichloroisocyanurate and peracetic acid over a 60-minute period (P=0.188). Given the greater occupational health hazards generally associated with chlorine-releasing agents, odour-free peracetic acid-based disinfectants may offer a suitable alternative for environmental disinfection.

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