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Impact of staff posture on airborne particle distribution in an operating theatre equipped with ultraclean-zoned ventilation

Sasan Sadrizadeh, Sture Holmberg, 2015
posture | ultraclean-zoned ventilation | operating theatre | Contaminant Distribution | computational fluid dynamics
Bibliographic info: 36th AIVC Conference " Effective ventilation in high performance buildings", Madrid, Spain, 23-24 September 2015.
Languages: English Pages (count): 6

Airborne particles released from surgical team members are major sources of surgical site infections (SSIs). To reduce SSI risk, ultraclean-zoned ventilation (UZV) systems have been widely applied, supplementary to the main operating theatre (OT) ventilation. Usually, OT ventilation performance is determined without considering the influence of staff-member posture and movements. Whether the surgeon’s posture during surgery influences particle distribution within the surgical area is not well analysed and documented.

In this paper, two positions (bending and straighten up) representing the most common surgeon and staff postures in an OT, were analysed. The investigation used computational fluid dynamics to solve the governing equations for airflow and airborne particle dispersion.

Results indicate that bending posture increases the overall number of suspended particles in the surgical area by disrupting the particle-free airflows introduced by the UZV screen. More attention should be paid to staff work practices, since UZV efficiency is highly sensitive to the improper work experience.

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