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Safety of Using Diapers Containing Copper Oxide in Chronic Care Elderly Patients

Weinberg I, Lazary A, Jefidoff A, Vatine J-J, Borkow G, Ohana N

Copper has very potent antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral and acaricidal properties. Recently the use of copper alloys in hospital wards has been shown to reduce bioburden and nosocomial infection rates. We hypothesized that the use of copper oxide in textiles and other products that are in close contact with the patients may significantly reduce bioburden in clinical settings and consequently reduce the risk of nosocomial infections. In order to test this hypothesis we intend to conduct a trial in which we will examine if the nosocomial infection rates in a chronic care ward will be reduced when all the textile products will include copper oxide. The risk of adverse reactions due to dermal contact with copper are considered extremely low and medical devices containing copper, such as intrauterine devices and dental amalgams, are safely used for decades. Textile products containing copper oxide are being sold worldwide for several years and not even one adverse reaction was noted. However, in spite of all the above, and in preparation to the clinical trial we intend to conduct in a chronic care ward (long-term care facility), we conducted this preliminary study in which we examined the safety of using copper oxide impregnated diapers in 16 chronic care patients that used the diapers for 6 consecutive months. Importantly, not even one adverse reaction was recorded during the whole trial, indicating the high safety of the diapers. Therefore, this study allows us to examine the efficacy of textiles containing copper oxide in reducing nosocomial infections in larger populations, including in frail chronic care patients.


February 22, 2013
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