One step sterilization procedure may be more effective in preventing blood stream infections than a four step procedure

A one step procedure may be more effective in preventing central-line bloodstream infections than a four step procedure that is currently used widely, according to an ongoing study.

For the study, researchers in France are investigating differences in central-line blood stream infection rates between a one step sterilization procedure using 2% chlorhexidine in 70% Isopropyl Alcohol and a four step procedure using Povidone Iodine.  Investigators are using blood and catheter cultures to obtain the data.

Preliminary findings include:

  • Bacterial colonization was significantly higher when the four step process was used for sterilization (31.5 colonizations per 1,000 days) in comparison to the single sterilization (5.2 colonizations).
  • Two central-line bloodstream infections occurred when the four step process was used; none occurred in the one step chlorhexidine group.
  • Nurses report the one step process as being significantly easier to do than the four step process 
  • Nurses report the one step process as being significantly easier to do than the four step process

(Sources: The Advisory Board Daily Briefing, www.advisory.com, September 14, 2012; American Society for Microbiology, http://www.abstractsonline.com, September 2012)