Even most powerful disinfectants can be powerless against superbugs

July 17, 2019  10:50

Antibiotic-resistant superbugs can survive in hospitals where they are exposed to potent chlorine-based disinfectants, researchers from the University of Plymouth (UK) reported.

According to experts, traces of superbugs can remain on surgical gowns in hospitals - even after their disinfection. Experts found on disinfected surgical clothing three different strains of bacteria Clostridium difficile, capable of causing diarrhea, fever and nausea. Moreover, in UK hospitals, where the study was conducted, there are fairly strict disinfection protocols, and all clothes for doctors pass through intensive processing with a solution containing 1000 particles of chlorine per million. Bleaching is continued for 10 minutes, Applied and Environmental Microbiology reported.

Researchers replicated the entire protocol for disinfecting clothes. It turned out that the spores of all three strains of bacteria were not only preserved on the surface of dressing gowns, but also remained in the same volume as before disinfection. Moreover, these disputes quickly moved to other surfaces within 10 seconds after contact.

The study's authors fear that contaminated surgeons' clothing may cause outbreaks of bacterial infections in hospitals. For immunocompromised patients, such infections can be fatal.

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