Certain clinical conditions or syndromes warrant institution of empiric infection control precautions to prevent transmission of epidemiologically important pathogens.2 Airborne precautions, including private negative pressure rooms and use of respiratory protection (eg, N95 masks), are recommended for patients with infections such as tuberculosis, varicella, and measles, which are transmitted as airborne droplet nuclei (≤ 5 mm). In addition, contact precautions are indicated for patients with varicella skin lesions. Droplet precautions are necessary in situations involving large droplet nuclei more than 5 mm (eg, influenza, invasive Neisseria meningitidis disease, pertussis).
- Airborne and contact precautions.
2. Garner JS; Hospital Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee. Guideline for isolation precautions in hospitals. Available at www.cdc.gov/ncidod/hip/ISOLAT/Isolat.htm. Accessed 4 Jan 2005.
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Seminars in Medical Practice
Hospital Physician Board Review Manuals
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