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Learn about the levels of surgical gowns here

Learn about the levels of surgical gowns

Did you know that there are several levels of surgical gowns? Depending on the level of exposure a physician may have a particular gown. At Divocco Medical we explain the levels and what they represent. Don’t miss this medical safety guide.

As health professionals, our goal is to cure patients. However, we cannot expose ourselves or risk our health to achieve this goal. During patient care we are always susceptible to contagion.

In order to ensure the protection of medical personnel while performing their work, the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation®, i.e. AAMI, has established the protective performance of materials in four levels.

When it comes to disposable gowns, the AAMI PB70 standard comes into play. This standard was developed to identify benchmarks against which institutions can evaluate protective gowns and surgical drapes.

These neutral criteria allow large organizations to easily standardize protective apron selection and choose the most suitable protection at a glance.

Don’t get scammed! Some Medical distributors will say anything to sell, but with this information, you will know exactly what you need.

Below, we will introduce you to the 4 different types of surgical gowns, what each one is used for and the material they should be made of.

Surgical gown level 1

AAMI Level 1 disposable medical gowns are used for low-pressure, low-risk exposure to liquids, jets and splashes. For example, eye surgery, skin biopsy and other minor operations and treatments.

Level 1 medical textiles must pass the impact penetration water resistance test and water penetration must be less than 4.5 grams.

Surgical gown level 2

AAMI level 2 surgical gowns are used for a small amount of fluid exposure and low risk of expulsion.

For example, hernia repair, tonsil surgery and angiography and other similar operations or treatments.

This level must pass the two anti-penetration tests, waterproofing test and hydrostatic pressure test.

That is to say, the infiltration water quantity of the first should be less than 1 gram and the hydrostatic pressure of the second should be more than 20cm2 of water.

Remember, if you are looking for a supplier of level 2 disposable isolation gowns, at Divocco Medical we have what you need.  

Surgical gown level 3

Surgical gown level 3

AAMI Level 3 sterile surgical gowns are used for medium liquid exposure and increased risk of sputtering.

For example, shoulder arthroscopy, prostatectomy and other similar operations and treatments.

This level has higher index requirements for water infiltration and hydrostatic pressure testing.

In other words, the water infiltration must be less than 1 gram and the hydrostatic test must be greater than 50cm2 of water to ensure that the medical product is of the highest quality.

Surgical gown level 4

AAMI Level 4 isolation gowns are used for exposure to high volume liquids, high splash hazard and high production pressure.

For example, a spinal joint replacement, cesarean section, cardiovascular surgery and all invasive operations and care that a surgeon performs on a patient’s body.

This level needs to pass both blood and virus leakage detection tests and water repellency requirements.

That is, 140cm2 of water must be maintained for one minute without penetration of synthetic blood material. Finally, a microbial penetration test must also be performed to ensure maximum protection for healthcare personnel.

Acquisition criteria

Acquisition criteria

You may be thinking “Why not purchase level 4 isolation gowns for any procedure, wouldn’t that ensure greater safety?”. Well, technically yes, that is correct reasoning.

The issue is that, from an administrative point of view, doing that would not be cost effective. Because of the degree of protection that these types of gowns have, they are a bit more expensive.

But don’t worry, the AAMI PB-70 and the European ENI3795 standard have established these criteria based on the highest medical safety guidelines.

You can purchase the product you need with the confidence that it will give you the best security.

In any case, always check with your medical equipment suppliers whether the sterile surgical gowns you are about to purchase are reinforced in the critical areas.

That is, at the front and sleeves, so as to ensure maximum protection against possible microbiological contamination.

To conclude, let’s synthesize a little of what we have studied in this article. The AAMI PB70 determines the understanding of the critical areas of a surgical gown and the importance of each level of performance in choosing the best gown for healthcare workers.

We take into account that one of the critical areas of disposable isolation gowns are the sleeves, since it is one of the highest risk areas for exposure to blood-borne fluids and pathogens.

  • Level 1 surgical gown: Minimum level of fluid barrier protection.
  • Level 2 surgical gown: Low level of fluid barrier protection.
  • Level 3 surgical gown: Medium level of fluid barrier protection.
  • Level 4 surgical gown: Maximum level of fluid and viral barrier protection.

As the level increases, so does the need for increased barrier protection for all critical areas. Therefore, you should always have hand protection in addition.

We hope this article has been helpful. If you are looking for suppliers of medical equipment to buy disposable gowns in Canada, don’t hesitate, you know who to contact.

At Divocco Medical, we seamlessly interface healthcare and technology to optimize both the logistics of supplying medical equipment and to create the devices of tomorrow.