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Robert Blanchard
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A Medical Device That Promotes Hospital Infections?

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With all the problems these days with antibiotic-resistant bacteria and outbreaks of infections in hospitals, it is shocking to contemplate that devices used in hospital procedures might actually encourage the spread of contaminants. As a recent article (click here) explains, a device often used in hip and knee implant surgeries may be responsible for violating the sterile field that doctors try to maintain around the operating table.

Bair Hugger’s inventor, Dr. Scott Augustine, tried to notify hospitals about the infection risks several years ago. An anesthesiologist practicing in Minnesota, Dr. Augustine was among the first to demonstrate the advantages of keeping a patient warm during surgery.  When he realized that his invention was spreading infectious bacteria in operating rooms, he created another device, similar to an electric blanket, eliminating the risks of using forced air. … Recently, there has been a significant rise in the number of patients coming forward, alleging that their infections and post-surgical complications (including removal of surgical prostheses and amputation) were caused by use of the Bair Hugger.