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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 61  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 245-249

Disinfection of laryngoscopes: A survey of practice

Department of Anaesthesiology, Seth G. S. Medical College and KEM Hospital, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Vaishali Prabhakar Chaskar
1303, Balaji Avenue co-op Hsg Soc., Plot No. 30, Sector 36, Kamothe, Navi Mumbai - 410 209, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ija.IJA_347_16

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Background and Aims: The laryngoscope is a common piece of equipment used by anaesthesiologists. It has been identified as a potential source of cross infection. Although guidelines exist regarding appropriate disinfection practices, recent reviews suggest ineffectiveness of current methods of disinfection and poor compliance with the established protocols. We conducted a questionnaire-based survey to study the current disinfection practices being followed by a cross section of anaesthesiologists. Methods: A simple questionnaire containing 13 questions was distributed amongst anaesthesiologists in an anaesthesia conference. Data were analysed with percentage analysis. Results: Out of 250 delegates who attended the conference, 150 submitted the completed questionnaires. Residents constituted 41% and 46% were consultants. Eighteen (12%) used only tap water for cleaning and 132 (88%) used a chemical agent after rinsing with water. Out of 132, 76 (51%) used detergent/soap solution, 29 (19%) would wash and then soak in disinfectant or germicidal agents (glutaraldehyde, povidone iodine and chlorhexidine) and 18 (12%) would wipe the blade with an alcohol swab. With respect to disinfection of laryngoscope handles, 70% respondents said they used an alcohol swab, 18% did not use any method, 9% were not aware of the method being used, while 3% did not respond. Conclusion: Our results indicate wide variation in methods of decontamination of laryngoscopes. Awareness regarding laryngoscope as a potential source of infection was high. We need to standardise and implement guidelines on a national level and make available resources which will help to improve patient safety.

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