Journal Article

Impact of Ring Wearing on Hand Contamination and Comparison of Hand Hygiene Agents in a Hospital

William E. Trick, Michael O. Vernon, Robert A. Hayes, Catherine Nathan, Thomas W. Rice, Brian J. Peterson, John Segreti, Sharon F. Welbel, Steven L. Solomon and Robert A. Weinstein

in Clinical Infectious Diseases

Published on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America

Volume 36, issue 11, pages 1383-1390
Published in print June 2003 | ISSN: 1058-4838
Published online June 2003 | e-ISSN: 1537-6591 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/374852
Impact of Ring Wearing on Hand Contamination and Comparison of Hand Hygiene Agents in a Hospital

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We determined risk factors for hand contamination and compared the efficacy of 3 randomly allocated hand hygiene agents in a group of surgical intensive care unit nurses. We cultured samples of one of the subjects' hands before and samples of the other hand after hand hygiene was performed. Ring wearing was associated with 10-fold higher median skin organism counts; contamination with Staphylococcus aureus, gram-negative bacilli, or Candida species; and a stepwise increased risk of contamination with any transient organism as the number of rings worn increased (odds ratio [OR] for 1 ring worn, 2.6; OR for >1 ring worn, 4.6). Compared with use of plain soap and water, hand contamination with any transient organism was significantly less likely after use of an alcohol-based hand rub (OR, 0.3; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.1–0.8) but not after use of a medicated hand wipe (OR, 0.9; 95% CI, 0.5–1.6). Ring wearing increased the frequency of hand contamination with potential nosocomial pathogens. Use of an alcohol-based hand rub resulted in significantly less frequent hand contamination.

Journal Article.  4552 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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