Editorial - Blood Splash Injury: An Underestimated Risk in Endourology?

BERKELEY, CA (UroToday.com) - Minimally invasive urologic surgery does not protect you from possible blood or fluid splash contamination.

Researchers in the United Kingdom used crime scene investigation techniques to show that almost 50% of the surgeons, and one third of the assisting surgeons and scrub nurses had blood contamination of their surgical mask and/or eye shields during these procedures. This splash contamination was highest in the laparoscopic nephrectomy (84%) and the laparoscopic pyeloplasty (67%) procedures. However, flexible ureteroscopy and percutaneous nephrolithotomy were associated with more than 50% splash rates.

Although all of the other rigid endoscopic procedures also had more than 30% positive splash contamination, they were the least commonly associated with this risk. These high rates of splash contamination during surgery in the video endoscopic suite should motivate surgeons to protect themselves from possible exposure to blood-borne contaminants.

M.P. Wines, A. Lamb, A.N. Argyropoulos, A. Kaviezel, C. Gannicliffe, D. Tolley

J Endourol. 2008 Jun;22(6):1183-7

PubMed Abstract
PMID: 18498231

UroToday.com Laparoscopic and Robotic Section