Medical clothing: safeguarding health and well-being

Date: June 22, 2009
Pages: 27
Price:
US$ 520.00
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Publisher: Textiles Intelligence Ltd
Report type: Strategic Report
Delivery: E-mail Delivery (PDF)
ID: M2A5186A2ECEN
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Medical clothing: safeguarding health and well-being
Medical clothing plays a major role in human well-being by protecting individuals against infection, by monitoring physiological signs and by promoting health.

The protective properties of medical clothing are gaining new-found interest among health care workers and public health officials as a result of the increasing incidence of infections contracted in hospitals and the sporadic outbreak of deadly viruses among the general public. The most recent example of such an outbreak is that of the H1N1 virus popularly known as Mexican swine flu which manifested itself in April 2009. Preventing such outbreaks also has a financial dimension, given that the costs of treating infections and viruses are soaring.

One technology which should help to stem the increase in health care costs is that of clothing with healing properties. Also wearable textile-based health monitoring systems should save health care costs by enabling individuals to manage their own health.

In the meantime, new fabric technologies have paved the way for the development of medical clothing which satisfies a need for comfort as well as protection. Indeed, many garments worn by the medical profession are now enhanced with comfort and performance features which are more commonly associated with high-tech sportswear and athletic apparel.
SUMMARY

INTRODUCTION

MEDICAL PROTECTIVE CLOTHING


Wearers of medical protective clothing

DEVELOPMENT OF MEDICAL PROTECTIVE CLOTHING

THE ROLE OF MEDICAL PROTECTIVE CLOTHING IN THE REDUCTION OR ELIMINATION OF CONTAMINATION (ASEPSIS)


Potential of medical protective clothing to cause cross-infection

GARMENTS AND ACCESSORIES WORN BY HEALTH CARE WORKERS

Garments worn by health care workers
Accessories worn by health care workers
Sterile gloves
Footwear covers
Independent sleeves
Safety glasses
Surgical masks
Disposable plastic aprons
Scrub hats

ESSENTIAL PROPERTIES OF MEDICAL PROTECTIVE CLOTHING

Barrier protection
Comfort
Practical design
Durability
Resistance to undesirable effects
Microbial resistance
Lint resistance
Flame resistance
Static resistance
Stain resistance
Wrinkle resistance
Fashionable appearance
Colours used for medical protective clothing
Patterns used for medical protective clothing

FABRICS USED IN MEDICAL PROTECTIVE CLOTHING

Cotton
Bamboo
Polyester
Blends
High performance fabrics Nonwovens
Spunlace
Polypropylene SMS
Polyethylene
REGULATION AND TESTING OF MEDICAL PROTECTIVE CLOTHING
Regulation of the sale of medical protective clothing
Efficacy testing
INTELLIGENT MEDICAL CLOTHING
Wearable textile-based health monitoring systems
Examples of wearable textile-based health monitoring systems
Textronics: wearable sensors for use in health monitoring
VivoMetrics: LifeShirt
Sensatex: SmartShirt
ConText project: RSI vest
Verhaert Design and Development (VDD) and the University of Brussels: Mamagoose pyjamas

THERAPEUTIC CLOTHING

Examples of therapeutic clothing
Espère Healthcare: DermaSilk
Therapeutic Systems: Deep pressure vest
Telesto Medtech: ERX therapeutic garments
Woolmark Development International (WDI): Sensory Perception Technology (SPT) microcapsules

OUTLOOK

LIST OF TABLES

Table 1: Appropriate clothing for different levels of risk of infection
Table 2: Survival of micro-organisms on hospital fabrics
Table 3: Efficacy tests for medical protective clothing

LIST OF FIGURES

Figure 1: Laboratory (lab) coat
Figure 2: Scrubs
Figure 3: Surgical gown
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