Recovery and processing teams employ antiseptics and surgical scrubs prior to gloving and gowning for tissue recovery and aseptic processing. Procedures can vary from company-to-company. Recently, WHO has reviewed the antibacterial effects of alcohol, Polyvinyl Pyrrolidone Iodine (PVP-I), and other topical antiseptics with respect to spectrum and speed of activity against bacteria but the report included only limited information on against viruses. WHO notes wide variation in hand washing techniques worldwide as to choice of agent, dose, and contact time. We know of no single study comparing these factors as to antibacterial and antiviral speed of kill. Accordingly, since tissue bank workers are vigilant in maintaining aseptic techniques, we thought it important to provide current laboratory data so as to assist in the ranking of the various techniques and reagents that are available. Contact times of 15 and 60 seconds were studied as examples of kill time ranges reported by WHO and as examples of kill times at Gibraltar Laboratories in studies conducted for various antiseptic manufacturers according to FDA and ASTM methods.
Authors: Herbert N. Prince, PhD, Daniel L. Prince PhD