When preparing a patient for surgery, the preoperative process mostly involves the removal of hair around the surgical site. Numerous studies have shown a direct relationship between surgical site infections and the removal of hair (Herbst, 2006, p9). However, this question is largely debatable on the basis of the most appropriate method of hair removal to be applied. Traditionally, shaving was the most common method of hair removal prior to a surgery (Ancheril, 2004). Conversely, after reviewing various medical journals on what would be the best preoperative method of hair removal that reduces the risk of surgical site infection, I came to a conclusion that clipping is more effective and highly lowers the rate of acquiring an infection. In this paper, I will seek to discuss the Germ theory and how I can use it to support my proposed solution.
The Germ theory states that diseases are caused by an array of microorganism also referred to as pathogens (Herbst, 2006, p4). The germ theory was a late 19th century scientific discovery which argued that diseases are caused by small infectious organism which may range from bacterium, virus, prion or fungus (Jose & Dignon,2013). This theory blends perfectly with my project since the whole idea of preventing Surgical Infections requires an in-depth knowledge of how infections occur. The germ theory can be used to explain how the use of a razor to remove hair around the surgical site can cause small cuts and abrasions that increases the risk of a patient becoming infected.
With the support of the Germ theory, I plan to argue my proposed solution and explain why I think shaving should be totally avoided unless in situations that it is the only option. Appropriate procedures and methods in removing hair are known to prevent surgical infections. In my PICOT study, the importance of this theory will be manifested and further explain why I consider the removal of hair using surgical clippers to being the best method.
Ancheril, A. (2004). Evaluation of a program implemented to reduce surgical wound infection in
an acute care hospital in India: A clinical practice improvement project.
Gould, D. (2012). Causes, prevention and management of surgical site infection. Nursing
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Herbst, J. (2006). Germ theory. Minneapolis: Twenty-First Century Books.
Jose, B., & Dignon, A. (2013). Is there a relationship between preoperative shaving (hair
removal) and surgical site infection. Journal of Perioperative Practice, 23(1/2), 22-25.
Mayhall, C. G. (2012). Hospital epidemiology and infection control. Lippincott Williams &