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Reliability of N95 respirators for respiratory protection before, during, and after nursing procedures
Background: The adequate fit of an N95 respirator is important for health care workers to reduce the transmission of airborne infectious diseases in the clinical setting. This study aimed to evaluate whether adequately sealed N95 respirators may provide consistent protection for the wearer while performing nursing procedures. Methods: Participants were a group of nursing students (N = 120). The best fitting respirator for these participants was identified from the 3 common models, 1860, 1860S, and 1870+ (3M), using the quantitative fit test (QNFT) method. Participants performed nursing...
Performance of Facepiece Respirators and Surgical Masks Against Surgical Smoke
Simulated Workplace Protection Factor Study Objective: Surgical smoke generated during electrocautery contains toxins which may cause adverse health effects to operating room (OR) personnel. The objective of this study was to investigate the performance of surgical masks (SMs), which are routinely used in ORs, more efficient N95 surgical mask respirator (SMRs) and N100 filtering facepiece respirator (FFRs), against surgical smoke. Methods: Ten subjects were recruited to perform surgical dissections on animal tissue in a simulated OR chamber, using a standard electrocautery device, generating surgical...
Ebola Care and Lack of Consensus on Personal Protective Respiratory Equipment
The Ebola epidemic in West Africa presents a considerable occupational risk to the health personnel involved. The principal mode of virus transmission to health care personnel is through direct contact with the patient, although transmission by aerosols through the air may also occur. Many safety protocols have been suggested relating to personal protection and particularly respiratory protection. It is generally agreed that all health care workers should have easy access to personal protective equipment. However, the degree of respiratory safety escalates from a mask, to an adequate respirator...
N95 Respirators use during pregnancy
Findings from recent research Recent NIOSH research has shed some light on the topic of the safety of N95 filtering facepiece respirators (FFR) use by pregnant workers. Women make up approximately one-half of the US work force. At any given time, about 10% of those female workers of child-bearing age (15–44 years of age) will be pregnant. Because many women are employed in occupations that require the use of protective facemasks, such as medical/surgical masks and FFR, NIOSH conducted research into the safety of FFR use while pregnant. The most frequently used FFR in the US is the N95 FFR...
Lack of Adherence to Respiratory PPE Seen During First Wave of H1N1 Pandemic
Many healthcare professionals were exposed to the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus during the first wave of the pandemic because they were not using respiratory protection and/or other pieces of personal protective equipment (PPE). David B. Banach MD, MPH, of the Department of Medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, and colleagues, suggest that unprotected exposures tended to be more frequent among healthcare workers caring for patients with atypical clinical presentations.

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