Most Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis patients know that the hospital is crawling with dangerous super-bugs that they have to avoid. However, the number one (#1) source of protection is washing their hands. Unfortunately, study results have now found that sinks in hospitals may be a part of the issue since reports have noted multidrug-resistant bacteria (bacteria that resist multiple antibiotics) living in hospital sink drainpipes and putting them in close proximity to vulnerable patients such as those with Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis. Even more shocking is how the bacteria finds their way out of the drains and into patients. The following will shed more insight and offer Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis patients tips to make it in and out of the hospital while limiting the risk of acquiring multidrug-resistant bacteria.
University of Virginia Researchers announced that bacteria spreads from drainpipes to patients by colonizing in the elbows of the drain and growing slowly towards the sink strainers – at the rate of roughly one inch per day. Within approximately a week bacteria quickly get splattered around the sink when water hits the drain, and even onto the countertops surrounding the sinks, where they can be picked up by the patients.
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It is important for those with Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis to realize that multidrug-resistant bacteria is a major concern because it is on the rise in hospitals (Dialysis patients are hospitalized on average 3 times as frequently as the general population) and contribute to an increase in the rate of death among patients. The following tips may help you avoid contracting drug-resistant bacteria:
- Use a paper towel or clean cloth to turn on and off all hospital sinks.
- Ask your nurse or hospital staff attendant to wipe off the sink in the hospital room you are staying.
- Do not lean on or sit on your hospital sink counter.
- Run the water at a low pressure and do not turn it to high in order to limit splatter of potential bacteria.
- Never put your fingers down the drain of a hospital sink since it may contain bacteria. Even if you accidentally lose a ring or a small trinket (small ornament or item of jewelry) because it may not be worth the high risk.
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