Surgical gowns are a type of medical clothing worn for protection from pathogens during surgery. They provide an extra layer of cleanliness and hygiene to the surgical team, which is especially important in the hospital setting where more than one patient may be undergoing surgery at any given time. The first step to choosing a surgical gown for your practice is determining what fabric you prefer: cotton or synthetic? Cotton offers superior comfort and breathability but can wear out quicker than some synthetics; whereas synthetic fabrics offer more durability but a less natural feel. Synthetic fabrics also tend to cost less on average than cotton ones do – so it’s really up to you!
These fabrics have large pores through which microorganisms can easily flow, resulting in poor barrier qualities. Closely woven textiles should be combined with polyester and long-staple cotton and treated with liquid-repellent fluorocarbons to improve the barrier quality. These are durable but must be treated with a repellent finish agent after each wash to improve the barrier effects since they lose effectiveness over time.
The most common of these are nylon. Unlike cotton/cotton-polyester and other similar materials, it is manufactured from extremely small filaments. During the reprocessing procedure, they are treated with a hydrophobic agent.
Here, multiple layers are employed to meet particular goals. Outer layers protect against abrasion and penetration, while middle layers resist fluid penetration, and the innermost layer provides comfort to users.
Nonwoven techniques are used to produce one-time-use surgical gowns, which are generally white. Disposable surgical robes and drapes account for around 90% of the market in the United States. Manufacturers sanitize the goods and offer them to customers in this manner, making it more pleasant for them as well as enhancing barrier quality. However, since it is only used once, it raises environmental risk and the cost of items.
Woven fabrics are frequently used to make reusable gowns. It reduces medical waste and has financial benefits. However, owing to the continual recycling process, these gowns become unsafe after a period of time.
To prevent surgical textiles from catching infections, sterilization techniques are used on fabrics employed in surgery. Worldwide, there are four different types of sterilization procedures. Gas and irradiation are examples of low-temperature processes utilized for disposable types of surgical gowns, while steam autoclave and dry heat are examples of high-temperature methods used for reusable surgical gowns.
The steam autoclave is popular since it is effective, safe, and inexpensive; however, it isn’t suitable for heat or moisture sensitive textiles. Eton is a better choice because it produces less toxic and shorter cycles, yet it necessitates longer cycles. As a result of this, we may think of two typical processes as substitutes to the other techniques – the Steris System and the Starred system.