K-4114. Does Nano-treated Neckties Reduce the Carriage of Bacterial Pathogens from Neckties of Physicians?
Session: Poster Session: Nosocomial Infections and the Environment
Tuesday, October 28, 2008: 12:00 AM
Room: Hall C
Background: Physician’s neckties have been implicated in the carriage of bacterial pathogens as potential reservoir for cross-infections. Nanotechnology treatment of neckties claims to form a protective barrier that make neckties microbe resistant, and may reduce the possibility of nosocomial infections. This study compared bacterial carriage of nano-treated neckties (NTN) to untreated neckties (UN) in physicians working in the hospital. Methods: 40 physicians were given a NTN. On separate days, their own UN and the NTN were cultured morning and afternoon on two different locations (knot and bottom of the tie). The swabs were cultured on Trypticase Soy Agar with 5% sheep blood plates and incubated at 37° C, 5% CO2 for 48 hours. Organisms were identified and the number of colony forming units (CFU) was counted on each plate. Physicians answered a questionnaire in the afternoon related to their hospital activity while wearing their ties. CFU counts were analyzed using analysis of covariance in a Poisson regression model. Results: 34 physicians completed cultures for the NTN and 35 physicians completed cultures for the UN. 52 questionnaires were completed; on average each physician examined 9 patients, 44% examined open wounds, 60% examined central venous lines/Foley catheters. There was a greater number of CFU in the afternoon cultures compared to the morning cultures (p<0.0001), and the knot of the tie was shown to have a greater number of CFU compared to the bottom of the tie (p=0.004), both irrespective of tie type. NTN showed more CFUs than the UN (p=0.002). Most organisms identified were normal skin flora. Conclusions: Nano-treated neckties did not prevent the bacterial carriage on physicians’ neckties. There were a significant greater number of bacteria in the afternoon cultures compared to the morning cultures, and the knot of the tie was shown to have a greater number of CFU compared to the bottom of the tie, both irrespective of tie type. Most of the bacterial isolates from the ties were considered normal skin flora.
John Cawley, BS, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL, Mary Hedges, MD, Mayo Clinic Florida, Salvador Alvarez, MD, Mayo Clinic Jacksonville, Jacksonville, FL, Wendelyn Bosch, MD, Infectious Diseases, Mayo Clinic Florida, Jacksonville, FL and  W. Bosch, None.


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