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Surgical Glove Selection

Fri, 02/18/2011 - 5:29am
Pam Werner, RN, BSN, MBA, CNOR, clinical consultant for Ansell Healthcare Products LLC, www.ansell.com

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Barrier protection. It is important to choose the right glove for the right task. For example, if you’re performing microsurgery, you may need a glove that is thinner that provides adequate barrier, but more tactile sensitivity and dexterity.

Surgical glove selection criteria are based upon a number of factors:

Barrier protection. It is important to choose the right glove for the right task. For example, if you’re performing microsurgery, you may need a glove that is thinner that provides adequate barrier, but more tactile sensitivity and dexterity. If performing orthopedics, you might be more likely to wear an orthopedic-style glove that provides extra protection with increased thickness, strength, and tear and puncture resistance to withstand the rigors of orthopedic surgery.  It all comes down to: what is the at-risk population that you’re dealing with?

Prevention of surgical site infection through appropriate use of gloves in the OR. The use of sterile gloves is part of general aseptic procedure to prevent surgical team members from transmitting infectious agents to patients during surgery. The risk of perforations in surgical gloves is thought to correlate with the duration of wear and type of surgical procedure performed.  Double gloving for long procedures or invasive procedures is highly recommended.  In fact the AORN recommends double gloving as a standard of practice. Research has demonstrated that the addition of a second pair of surgical gloves significantly reduces perforations to the innermost glove. Further, wearing double gloves of two different colors enables the glove wearer to detect perforations to the outermost glove more easily. The outer glove can then be changed.

Allergy Management. Gloves made of synthetic materials are getting more attention with the prevalence of allergies to natural rubber latex Type I allergy and Type IV chemical allergy among patients and medical staff. It is extremely important to diagnosis the allergy so that the correct selection can be made to meet the need of the user or patient.

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