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Am J Infect Control. 2015 Jul 1;43(7):724-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ajic.2015.03.024. Epub 2015 May 18.

Pathogen transfer and high variability in pathogen removal by detergent wipes.

Author information

1
School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Cardiff University, Cardiff, United Kingdom.
2
School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Cardiff University, Cardiff, United Kingdom. Electronic address: maillardj@cardiff.ac.uk.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The rise in health care-associated infections has placed a greater emphasis on cleaning and disinfection practices. The majority of policies advocate using detergent-based products for routine cleaning, with detergent wipes increasingly being used; however, there is no information about their ability to remove and subsequently transfer pathogens in practice.

METHODS:

Seven detergent wipes were tested for their ability to remove and transfer Staphylococcus aureus, Acinetobacter baumannii, and Clostridium difficile spores using the 3-stage wipe protocol.

RESULTS:

The ability of the detergent wipes to remove S aureus, A baumannii, and C difficile spores from a stainless steel surface ranged from 1.50 log10 (range, 0.24-3.25), 3.51 log10 (range, 3.01-3.81), and 0.96 log10 (range, 0.26-1.44), respectively, following a 10-second wiping time. All wipes repeatedly transferred significant amounts of bacteria/spores over 3 consecutive surfaces, although the percentage of total microorganisms transferred from the wipes after wiping was low for a number of products.

CONCLUSIONS:

Detergent-based wipe products have 2 major drawbacks: their variability in removing microbial bioburden from inanimate surfaces and a propensity to transfer pathogens between surfaces. The use of additional complementary measures such as combined detergent/disinfectant-based products and/or antimicrobial surfaces need to be considered for appropriate infection control and prevention.

KEYWORDS:

Acinetobacter baumannii; Clostridium difficile; Disinfection; Staphylococcus aureus; Surface cleaning

PMID:
25997876
DOI:
10.1016/j.ajic.2015.03.024
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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