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Contamination of Ring Dosimeters and Hands Among Proceduralists Performing Invasive Procedures

Barwatt, Holly (2023) Contamination of Ring Dosimeters and Hands Among Proceduralists Performing Invasive Procedures. Master Essay, University of Pittsburgh.

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Ring dosimeters are radiation safety monitoring devices worn by proceduralists during invasive procedures requiring ionizing radiation. Since they are not single-use, contaminated ring dosimeters may confer a risk of hand contamination, and subsequently surgical glove contamination, procedural wound contamination, and procedural site infections. No previous study has quantified the risk of contamination on the hands of those wearing ring dosimeters, and research on fomites that could add infection risk in low-risk procedural settings remains scant. The aim of this novel pilot study was to measure the contamination risk of ring dosimeters on the hands of proceduralists wearing these rings and provide insight on fomite contamination during procedures where infections may be underreported. This observational study was conducted with select providers at UPMC Presbyterian and UPMC Shadyside hospitals in Pittsburgh, PA. Using convenience sampling, ring and ring finger samples were collected using sterile saline-moistened synthetic swabs before and after low-level disinfection (LLD) and hand hygiene (HH), respectively. The primary outcome was the reduction of bacterial contamination after pre-procedural HH and ring disinfection. As a secondary analysis, we compared finger contamination among ring dosimeter wearers and non-wearer controls. We report mean aerobic colony counts (ACCs) and the proportion of samples with any growth on pre-and post-HH fingers between ring wearers and non-wearers and on rings of those who wear them before and after disinfection. Pre-HH samples from the ring wearers had a higher mean of ACC than post-HH samples, but only 25% and 14% of samples showed growth, respectively. Pre-LLD samples had a mean of 1.1; however, post-LLD samples were not performed due to guideline non-adherence providers. Findings from this pilot study indicate that hand hygiene procedures are most likely sufficient and post procedural infection risk is therefore low. A full-scale study will be needed to fully assess the validity of safety measures associated with current ring dosimeter-related procedures as well as if other fomites in a similar situation is warranted. Evaluating the risk of procedural infections will continue to be vital in public health even in areas considered low risk.


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Item Type: Other Thesis, Dissertation, or Long Paper (Master Essay)
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Barwatt, HollyHOB26@pitt.eduHOB26
ContributionContributors NameEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Thesis advisorGlynn, Nancyepidnwg@pitt.eduepidnwgUNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberSnyder, Grahamsnydergm3@upmc.eduUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberGlista, RebeccaGlista-glistare@upmc.eduUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date: 4 January 2023
Date Type: Completion
Submission Date: 9 December 2022
Access Restriction: 2 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 2 years.
Number of Pages: 43
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Epidemiology
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master Essay
Refereed: Yes
Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2023 15:14
Last Modified: 04 Jan 2023 15:14


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