Bacterial Contamination of Stethoscopes

*, Srikanth Aswin R. and Hegde, Ashwini (2014) Bacterial Contamination of Stethoscopes. International Journal of Scientific Research, 3 (11). pp. 406-408. ISSN 2277 - 8179

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Background and Objectives: The stethoscope, which comes into contact with multiple patients, can transmit infections from one patient to another. We intended to determine the level of contamination of stethoscopes and analyse the disinfection methods used by interns and postgraduates of a teaching hospital in South India. Materials & Methods: A non-randomized trial with self-reporting of disinfection practices was conducted among 105 interns and postgraduates in three teaching hospitals. Swabs were taken from each stethoscope and sent for analysis within one hour of collection. Antibiotic sensitivity of isolates was performed as per CLSI guidelines. Results: Among the 105 participants, 93(88.6%) stethoscopes showed evidence of contamination. The bacteria isolated include Coagulase- Negative Staphylococcus (56.1%), Staphylococcus aureus (18.1%), Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus(4.7%), Pseudomonas aeruginosa (6.6%) and Escherichia coli (2.8%). The frequency of disinfection determined the level of contamination. Conclusion: The high rate of contamination of stethoscopes and presence of dangerous pathogens like MRSA indicates that they could play a major role in the transmission of nosocomial infections. This is further supported by the observation that stethoscope cleaning procedures are not routinely employed by a large number of health care professionals.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Stethoscope, Disinfection, Contamination
Subjects: Medicine > KMC Mangalore > Microbiology
Depositing User: KMCMLR User
Date Deposited: 10 Dec 2014 11:23
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2014 11:23

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