Better care starts with safety and comfort.

Preventing Perioperative Infection With Passive Warming

By Chris Farrell, Vice President, Sales
May 2017


Every healthcare provider aims to have healthy, happy patients who are satisfied with their care. This means infection prevention is a critical goal in every healthcare environment, but it’s particularly vital to a patient’s experience in the operating room (OR). One way orthopods across the nation are decreasing rates of perioperative infections is by transitioning to passive warming technology, instead of forced air warming as perioperative hypothermia prevention.

Perioperative hypothermia prevention through passive warming technology

The Dangers of Lint In The OR

Many ORs use high-linting products (like cotton), but studies have shown that products, such as towels and apparel, made of natural fibers have the tendency to shed fiber and lint which can contribute to surgical site infections (SSI). When the lint is kicked up by air currents produced during forced air warming, it attracts bacteria and harmful microorganisms that can become buried in open wounds. Once a healthy wound has been contaminated the healing process is disrupted. As a result, inflammation occurs, which increases scarring, weakens suture lines, and increases the risk of infection.

In recent years, OR management has become aware of the risk of using high-lint linen in the OR and have begun to seek out alternative solutions. While it’s possible to significantly reduce complications such as excess fiber and lint by working with a reputable linen management team, there is still always the possibility that apparel or other OR linens may shed. This is particularly dangerous if using forced air warming as a hypothermia prevention solution.

Reduce The Risk Of OR Infection With Thermoflect

Preventing hypothermia reduces the risk of surgical site infection

A recent study found that 18% of hypothermic patients suffered from a SSI while only 6% of normothermic patients acquired infection. This goes to show just how crucial is to prevent hypothermia before it can even happen. However, excessive air exchange in operating rooms increases the loss of heat through convection and accounts for 25% of body heat loss.

Thermoflect uses an innovative material that reflects a patient’s internal radiant heat and preserves it in the body’s core, ultimately preventing heat loss. Using passive warming, the product prevents convective heat loss and infection that can occur from circulation of the surrounding air current. Thermoflect’s material is patient friendly, cost-effective, lightweight and durable enough to last throughout the entire perioperative procedure.

Our customers who have used Thermoflect have experienced reduced SSIs, healthcare costs, shorter hospital stays and most importantly, improved patient comfort and outcomes. Encompass Group offers a wide range of infection and hypothermia prevention products. Call 1-800-284-4540 today to learn more about how you can keep your patients safe and comfortable.


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For more information call Customer Service at 800-284-4540 or e-mail