from Kampf et al. 2005
published in J Hosp Infect 59(4):304-10
DOI 10.1016/j.jhin.2004.09.022

Surgical hand disinfection with a propanol-based hand rub: equivalence of shorter application times

The duration of the hand disinfection has an influence on a preparation's efficacy

The cross-over study examined the efficacy of Sterillium and four other hand disinfectants with different application times. For this, the 18 to 20 test subjects carried out surgical hand disinfection in accordance with EN 12791. Sterillium was applied to the hands for 3, 2, 1.5 or 1 minute(s). The application time for the reference alcohol (n-propanol, 60 %) was always 3 minutes. The four other hand disinfectants were applied for 1 minute. The fingers were rubbed in tryptic soy broth for 1 minute to determine the pre-values, immediate values and 3-hour values. The application of Sterillium for 3, 2 and 1.5 minutes was more effective than the reference procedure with n-propanol (60 %). Rubbing the hands for 1 minute yielded a mean immediate log10 reduction of 1.91 and, however, was significantly less effective than the reference procedure (2.52; p = 0.001). After 3 hours, the 1-minute disinfection with Sterillium achieved a mean log10 reduction of 1.81 and thus was not significantly less effective than the reference procedure (2.05; p = 0.204). All other products did not sufficiently reduce the resident skin flora after 1 minute. When applied for 1.5 minutes, Sterillium was more effective than the reference procedure. Longer application times (2, 3 minutes) did not reduce the hand’s microbial flora to a significantly higher extent.