Barriers to hepatitis C transmission within breathing systems: Efficacy of a pleated hydrophobic filter

Graham Lloyd, J. Howells, C. Liddle, P. L. Klineberg*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

It has been suggested that breathing circuits contaminated with body fluids may provide a route of nosocomial patient-to-patient transmission of the hepatitis C virus. Thus, a number of authorities have recommended the use of breathing circuit filters to minimize such risks. The present study sought to simulate a humidified breathing circuit and evaluate two different designs of breathing circuit filters to determine their efficacy in preventing passage of the hepatitis C virus. A hydrophobic pleated-membrane filter consistently prevented the passage of hepatitis C virus while a large-pore 'electret' filter design was ineffective. We conclude that not all filter types are equally suited to preventing the passage of viruses and we therefore consider it essential that, if filters are intended to prevent the passage of named pathogens in a humidified breathing circuit, they should be evaluated in a similar experimental system to that described in order to prove their efficacy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)235-238
Number of pages4
JournalAnaesthesia and Intensive Care
Volume25
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1997

Keywords

  • Cross infection: hepatitis C, breathing circuits, filters, nosocomial

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