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Challenge of N95 filtering facepiece respirators with viable H1N1 influenza aerosols.

Authors
Harnish-DA; Heimbuch-BK; Husband-M; Lumley-AE; Kinney-K; Shaffer-RE; Wander-JD
Source
Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2013 May; 34(5):494-499
NIOSHTIC No.
20042418
Abstract
Objective. Specification of appropriate personal protective equipment for respiratory protection against influenza is somewhat controversial. In a clinical environment, N95 filtering facepiece respirators (FFRs) are often recommended for respiratory protection against infectious aerosols. This study evaluates the ability of N95 FFRs to capture viable H1N1 influenza aerosols. Methods. Five N95 FFR models were challenged with aerosolized viable H1N1 influenza and inert polystyrene latex particles at continuous flow rates of 85 and 170 liters per minute. Virus was assayed using Madin-Darby canine kidney cells to determine the median tissue culture infective dose (TCID50). Aerosols were generated using a Collison nebulizer containing H1N1 influenza virus at [Formula: see text] TCID50/mL. To determine filtration efficiency, viable sampling was performed upstream and downstream of the FFR. Results. N95 FFRs filtered 0.8-Ám particles of both H1N1 influenza and inert origins with more than 95% efficiency. With the exception of 1 model, no statistically significant difference in filtration performance was observed between influenza and inert particles of similar size. Although statistically significant differences were observed for 2 models when comparing the 2 flow rates, the differences have no significance to protection. Conclusions. This study empirically demonstrates that a National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health-approved N95 FFR captures viable H1N1 influenza aerosols as well as or better than its N95 rating, suggesting that a properly fitted FFR reduces inhalation exposure to airborne influenza virus. This study also provides evidence that filtration efficiency is based primarily on particle size rather than the nature of the particle's origin.
Keywords
Aerosols; Respirators; Respiratory-protective-equipment; Respiratory-protection; Respiratory-infections; Infection-control; Infectious-diseases; Viral-diseases; Viral-infections; Aerosol-particles
Contact
Delbert A. Harnish, MS, Applied Research Associates, 430 West 5th Street, Suite 700, Panama City, FL 32401
CODEN
ICEPE3
Publication Date
20130501
Document Type
Journal Article
Email Address
dharnish@ara.com
Fiscal Year
2013
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
B20130416
Issue of Publication
5
ISSN
0899-823X
NIOSH Division
NPPTL
Priority Area
Healthcare and Social Assistance
Source Name
Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology
State
FL; DC; PA
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