Antiviral gloves instantly clean wounds

时间:2019-02-26 12:11:01166网络整理admin

By Michelle Knott Needlestick or scalpel injuries put healthcare workers at risk of life-threatening infections such as hepatitis C and HIV. But a simple pair of gloves that automatically disinfects the wounds could boost the chances of avoiding infection. More than one in three nurses in the UK have been stuck by a needle previously used to inject a patient, and seven per cent have been pricked more than once in the past year, according to the Royal College of Nursing, which represents the interests of British nurses. Street cleaners are also at risk from syringes discarded by intravenous drug users. Plain latex surgical gloves do not protect people from viruses once they have been punctured or split. But lab tests on the sandwich-like material used for the new glove indicate that it promises to cut the number of virus particles entering a wound by a factor of 15. It reduced infection rates in tests on animals by up to 60 per cent. The added protection is provided by a layer of viricidal liquid droplets sandwiched between two layers of synthetic rubber. The liquid contains a common broad-spectrum disinfectant based on ammonium salts and is particularly effective against viruses such as hepatitis C and HIV. As soon as a needle or other sharp object punctures the glove, the disinfectant liquid is released onto the wound. The G-VIR gloves were developed by Paris-based rubber goods firm Hutchinson. The idea came from a failed viricidal condom which had to be uncomfortably thick and could not contain enough disinfectant for the average amount of infected sperm it would have to deal with, says spokesman Gilles Argy. So an antiviral glove looked to be a better product. The gloves are made by dipping hand-shaped porcelain moulds into a vat of liquid synthetic rubber, then into an emulsion of the disinfectant and once more into the rubber. The layers dry to form a tough sandwich. While this makes the G-VIR gloves thicker than standard latex gloves, surgeons who tried them out at a hospital in Lyon are said to have adapted quickly to working with them. Many surgeons already wear two pairs of latex gloves when carrying out risky procedures, in any case. Hutchinson expects full clinical trials to start in late 2003 and is waiting for the results before predicting how effective the gloves will prove in practice. Carol Bannister, who advises the Royal College of Nursing on occupational health, warns that people in frequent contact with biocides or rubber compounds sometimes develop skin or respiratory problems. So while she welcomes the viricidal gloves as a promising idea,