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Hand antiseptics: rubs versus scrubs, alcoholic solutions versus alcoholic gels

Hand antiseptics: rubs versus scrubs, alcoholic solutions versus alcoholic gels

Journal of Hospital Infection 48 Suppl A: S33-S36

This report describes three different investigations undertaken to demonstrate the advantage of fluid alcoholic hand disinfectants. In the first study, the skin compatibility of Sterillium, a liquid alcoholic rub-in hand disinfectant was compared with that of Hibiscrub, a water-based handwashing antiseptic. Using various parameters such as image analysis of removed squames (D-squames), skin roughness or transepidermal water loss, Hibiscrub was found to be significantly inferior to Sterillium. Hibiscrub caused skin irritation in 15 volunteers who could not complete the test. In a second study, the microbicidal efficacy of Sterillium and Hibiscrub was tested in surgical hand disinfection. The microbial reduction by Sterillium was significantly greater than that of Hibiscrub, immediately after application as well as after the surgical procedure. In a third study, certain alcoholic gels were tested according to the EN 1500 'hygienic hand disinfection'. None of the gels tested passed the EN 1500 within 30s. However, Sterillium met the EN 1500 requirement within 30s. We conclude that Sterillium is superior to Hibiscrub in terms of skin tolerance and microbicidal efficacy in surgical hand disinfection. It is also superior to alcoholic gels.

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Accession: 046210735

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PMID: 11759022

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