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J Occup Environ Hyg ; 18(6): 265-275, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1228372


The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a high demand for respiratory protection among health care workers in hospitals, especially surgical N95 filtering facepiece respirators (FFRs). To aid in alleviating that demand, a survey of commercially available filter media was conducted to determine whether any could serve as a substitute for an N95 FFR while held in a 3D-printed mask (Stopgap Surgical Face Mask from the NIH 3D Print Exchange). Fourteen filter media types and eight combinations were evaluated for filtration efficiency, breathing resistance (pressure drop), and liquid penetration. Additional testing was conducted to evaluate two filter media disinfection methods in the event that the filters were reused in a hospital setting. Efficiency testing was conducted in accordance with the procedures established for approving an N95 FFR. One apparatus used a filter-holding device and another apparatus employed a manikin head to which the 3D-printed mask could be sealed. The filter media and combinations exhibited collection efficiencies varied between 3.9% and 98.8% when tested with a face velocity comparable to that of a standard N95 FFR at the 85 L min-1 used in the approval procedure. Breathing resistance varied between 10.8 to >637 Pa (1.1 to > 65 mm H2O). When applied to the 3D-printed mask efficiency decreased by an average of 13% and breathing resistance increased 4-fold as a result of the smaller surface area of the filter media when held in that mask compared to that of an N95 FFR. Disinfection by dry heat, even after 25 cycles, did not significantly affect filter efficiency and reduced viral infectivity by > 99.9%. However, 10 cycles of 59% vaporized H2O2 significantly (p < 0.001) reduced filter efficiency of the media tested. Several commercially available filter media were found to be potential replacements for the media used to construct the typical cup-like N95 FFR. However, their use in the 3D-printed mask demonstrated reduced efficiency and increased breathing resistance at 85 L min-1.

COVID-19/prevention & control , Disinfection/standards , Equipment Contamination/prevention & control , Materials Testing/standards , N95 Respirators/virology , Occupational Exposure/prevention & control , Pandemics/prevention & control , Air Pollutants, Occupational/analysis , Equipment Failure Analysis/statistics & numerical data , Guidelines as Topic , Humans , Inhalation Exposure/analysis , SARS-CoV-2
Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol ; 42(3): 253-260, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1009986


BACKGROUND: Personal protective equipment (PPE) is a critical need during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Alternative sources of surgical masks, including 3-dimensionally (3D) printed approaches that may be reused, are urgently needed to prevent PPE shortages. Few data exist identifying decontamination strategies to inactivate viral pathogens and retain 3D-printing material integrity. OBJECTIVE: To test viral disinfection methods on 3D-printing materials. METHODS: The viricidal activity of common disinfectants (10% bleach, quaternary ammonium sanitizer, 3% hydrogen peroxide, or 70% isopropanol and exposure to heat (50°C, and 70°C) were tested on four 3D-printed materials used in the healthcare setting, including a surgical mask design developed by the Veterans' Health Administration. Inactivation was assessed for several clinically relevant RNA and DNA pathogenic viruses, including severe acute respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and human immunodeficiency virus 1 (HIV-1). RESULTS: SARS-CoV-2 and all viruses tested were completely inactivated by a single application of bleach, ammonium quaternary compounds, or hydrogen peroxide. Similarly, exposure to dry heat (70°C) for 30 minutes completely inactivated all viruses tested. In contrast, 70% isopropanol reduced viral titers significantly less well following a single application. Inactivation did not interfere with material integrity of the 3D-printed materials. CONCLUSIONS: Several standard decontamination approaches effectively disinfected 3D-printed materials. These approaches were effective in the inactivation SARS-CoV-2, its surrogates, and other clinically relevant viral pathogens. The decontamination of 3D-printed surgical mask materials may be useful during crisis situations in which surgical mask supplies are limited.

COVID-19/prevention & control , Disinfectants/pharmacology , Disinfection/methods , Masks , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Virus Inactivation , 2-Propanol , DNA, Viral/drug effects , Decontamination/methods , HIV-1/drug effects , Healthy Volunteers , Hot Temperature , Humans , Hydrogen Peroxide , Personal Protective Equipment , Printing, Three-Dimensional , RNA, Viral/drug effects , Virus Diseases/prevention & control