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What You Need to Know About Medical Masks in the Medical Environment

What You Need to Know About Medical Masks in the Medical Environment

25/06/2021

By

Winner Medical

What You Need to Know About Medical Masks in the Medical Environment

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What You Need to Know About Medical Masks in the Medical Environment

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Ⅰ. Why do we need a fluid-resistant medical mask?

If your medical mask is not fluid resistant, you will not be adequately protected during operations such as endotracheal sputum suction, bronchoscopy, and invasive surgery, which can cause blood, body fluids, secretions or excrement to splash or spatter. Wearing an anti-fluid mask helps protect the wearer from mucosal contact and inhalation of these potentially infectious splashes.


Ⅱ. What is the main purpose of wearing medical masks in a medical environment?

1. Worn by medical staff to protect them from contagious splashes and sprays.


2. Worn by medical staff to protect patients from the source of infection carried by the mouth or nose of medical staff;


3. Worn by patients to limit the spread of infectious respiratory secretions from the patient to others (to protect others).


Ⅲ. What performance characteristics are tested using the medical mask standard specified by ASTM F2100-11? Why are these characteristics important?


1. BFE and PFE:

Bacterial filtration efficiency (BFE) and particle filtration efficiency (PFE) describing the performance of masks. The higher the percentage, the more bacteria or particles medical masks can prevent to passage, and BFE filter masks usually have high filtration efficiency.


2. Fluid resistance:

Under different pressures (80, 120, 160mm Hg), medical masks will be challenged by artificial blood. The higher the pressure, the greater the liquid jet and splash resistance will be.


3. Pressure difference:

Measure the pressure required to force air through the medical mask material. The lower the pressure difference, the higher the breathability and comfort of the mask will be.


4. Flammability:

The materials of medical masks are affected by flames. The rate at which the material burns determines the level of flammability.


Ⅳ. How do I know if my current medical mask provides adequate protection?

Look at the packaging! The new ASTM F2100-11 standard requires a graphic display on the packaging to indicate the performance level of medical masks. The new standard also changes the classification of masks from performance level (low, medium, high) to level (1, 2, 3). This grade is determined based on the test results of the above-mentioned material performance categories. 

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