Surg 102--Chapter 9 (Fuller) Flashcards Preview

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airborne contamination

Contamination of a sterile surface by microorganisms carried in the air by moisture droplets or dust particles.



Chemical agents approved for use on the skin that inhibit the growth and reproduction of microorganisms.



The absence of pathogentic microorganisms on an animate surface or on body tissue. Literally, asepsis means "without infection." In surgery, asepsis is a state of minimal or sero pathogens. Asepsis is the goal of many surgical practices.


aseptic technique

Methods or practices in health care that reduce infection.


Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

The U.S. government agency that researches public health issues and educates the lay public and professionals about disease transmission, origin, and prevention.


chemical barrier

The barrier formed by the action of an antiseptic; it not only reduces the number of microorganisms on a surface, but also prevents recolonization (regrowth) for a limited period.


closed gloving

A technique in gloving in which the bare hand does not come in contact with the outside of the glove. The sterile glove is protected from the nonsterile hand by the cuff of a surgical gown.



The consequence of physical contact between a sterile surface and a nonsterile surface in surgery. Contamination also can result from airborne dust, moisture droplets, or fluids that act as a vehicle for transporting contaminants from a nonsterile surface to a sterile one.


double gloving

Wearing two pairs of gloves, one over the other to reduce the risk of contamination as a result of glove failure or puncture.


gross contamination

Contamination of a large area of tissue by a highly infective source.


hand antisepsis

A technique for removing transient flora from the hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or surgical hand scrub.


hand washing

A specific technique used to remove debris and dead cells from the hands. Hand washing with an atiseptic also reduces the number of microorganisms on the skin.


latex allergy

Sensitivity to latex, which can cause itching, rhinitis, conjuctivitis, and anaphylactic shock leading to death. Personnel and patients with latex allergy must not come in contact with any articles that contain latex.


non sterile personnel

In surgery, team members who remain outside the boundary of the sterile field and do not come in direct contact with sterile equipment, sterile areas, or the surgical wound. The circulator, anesthesia care provider, and radiographic technician are examples of nonsterileteam members.


open gloving

A gloving technique in which the bare skin does not touch any part of the outside of the glove. Open gloving generally is used when a health worker does not need a sterile gown.



Having the potential to cuase disease.


physical barrier

In surgery, a barrier that separates a sterile surface from a nonsterile surface. Examples are sterile surgical gloves, gowns, and drapes. A physical barrier, such as a clean surgical cap, also can prevent a bacteria-laden surface, such as hair, from shedding microoganisms.


resident flora

Microoganisms normally present in specific human tissues.



The scrubbed surgical technologist or nurse assisting in surgery. Also refers to the surgical hand scrub performed before surgery and after contamination of the hands with body fluids.


scrubbed personnel

In surgery, members of the surgical team who work within the sterile field.



Any object that can penetrate the skin and that has the potential to cause injury and infection.


Standard Precautions

Potocols and guidelines established by the CDC to prevent the transmission of microorganisms in the health care environment. All aseptic technique practices are based on Standard Precautions.


sterile field

An area that includes the draped patient, all sterile tables, and sterile equipment in the immediate area of the patient. The patient is considered the center of the sterile field.


sterile item

Any item that has been subjected to a process that renders it free of all microbial life, including spores.



A state in which an inanimate or animate substance harbors absoloutely no viable microorganisms.


strike-through contamination

An event in which fluid from a nonsterile surface or air penetrates the protective wrapper of a sterile item, permitting potential contamination.



A surface agent, such as soap, that lowers surface tension, allowing greater permeability.


surgical hand rub

The systematic application of antiseptic foam or cream on the hands before gowning and gloving for a sterile procedure. The surgical hand rub may be used as an alternative to the traditional hand scrub under certain conditions.


surgical hand scrub

A specific technique for washing the hands before donning a surgical gown and gloves before surgery. The scrub is performed with times or counted strokes using detergent-based antiseptic. The surgical hand scrub is designed to remove dirt, oils, and transient microorganisms and reduce the number of resident microorgansisms.


surgical site infection (SSI)

Postoperative infection of the surgical wound, most commonly caused by the normal bacteria found on the patient's skin or shed from the skin or hair of surgical team members. The goal of the surgical skin preparation is to prevent postoperative wound infection.