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Am J Infect Control. 1993 Dec;21(6):297-301.

Effects of a protective foam on scrubbing and gloving.

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Georgetown University School of Nursing, Washington, DC 20007.



To test the effects of a skin protectant on surgical scrub and glove integrity.


Forty-nine healthy adult volunteers were assigned (12 subjects per group) to apply a protective foam (DermaMed; Benchmark Enterprises, Salt Lake City, Utah) in conjunction with surgical scrub in one of the following formulations: 70% isopropyl alcohol, a liquid detergent base containing 4% chlorhexidine gluconate, a liquid detergent base containing 7.5% povidone-iodine, or a nonantimicrobial liquid soap (control). According to a standard protocol, subjects performed a surgical scrub on 3 days (every other day). Foam was applied after surgical scrub on day 1 and before surgical scrub on day 3. No foam was applied on day 2. Subjects were gloved for 2 hours after surgical scrub.


Laboratory setting.


On all test days, there were significant differences in bacterial reduction by products (chlorhexidine gluconate or alcohol > povidone-iodine > control). When controlling for baseline counts and products used, there were no significant differences in colony-forming unit counts on hands with or without foam immediately after scrubbing or at 2 hours after scrub on gloved or ungloved hands, nor were there differences in glove leakage rates when foam was on hands.


Such protectants can be used without detrimental effects to scrub effectiveness or glove integrity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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