Infection control in electrolysis

  1. Hello all. The electrologists on here, I have a question and I hope you can help me with an answer. Do you all use a barrier film on the buttons of your machine? Such as this:

I ask because if you have a patient that is bleeding, and then you touch him/her with your glove, and then you touch your machine’s buttons with your bloody glove (when making an adjustment), does this not expose your next client to the previous person’s blood? Especially with really infectious diseases like hepatitis.

  1. 2ND QUESTION. If you have blood on a patient and you clean it all with a wipe, shouldn’t you throw that wipe away? Shouldn’t you use a new wipe each time?

Thank you for the anticipated help!

The chances of bleeding during Electrolysis is very remote. If by chance ever happens, it would be a drop of blood that in no case reaches gloves, cotton disinfectant solution to avoid this charge. In my case we used a product called Spray Instrunet to clean all the material in contact with the customer, including table, buttons on the machine and needle holder.

It is much more likely to be bleeding in waxed hairs in the bikini area or underarms, than with Electrolysis.

Some people use those barriers. Some not only have a barrier, but clean it after every client with chemicals (thus exposing the client to petro chemicals and solvents), and still others use disposable barriers that they throw away after each client.

The incidence of bleeding during a treatment is more likely if the electrolysis provider is releasing ingrown hairs, but can happen with a stray hair or two.

What you are asking really comes to the point of should an electrolysis practitioner create an operatory that one could make computer chips in, and utilize all sorts of costly disposable (oil/petrochemical) products to add to their overhead.

It is possible to get too obsessive with these kinds of measures. Why stop at using a different cotton ball for every time you wipe the person’s skin. Why not change gloves as well? If you sneeze, change gloves and face mask too.

Should some infection control be used? Certainly. On the other hand, what this country and the world has as a larger problem, is the immune system compromising environment and so called food permeating the society, and opening up the door to increased sickness from previously non-threatening things.

One small example, a large part of the immune system is in the intestines, and the intestines need to move things along at a steady pace to keep the body healthy. What it needs to do this are fiber and water. The average organic food has 5 to 10 grams of fiber per serving, while the average processed food has 0 to 5 grams per serving, and a person needs a minimum of 20 grams per day. Same with water. The hydration deficit for the average american is a crying shame.

Later, when this immuno-compromised person gets sick, they will blame many things other than their years long voluntary immune system suppression.

Let me put the question back to you another way. Our society has now convinced toll takers to wear disposable (petro-chemical product) gloves while taking change, and airline and hospitality workers as well. Should they change gloves in between every person so they don’t pass on some pathogen from their gloved hand to the next person(s) they come in contact with?

It is an economy of scale.

Of course, the official response from the associations will be, Yes, they should be using all those barriers and chemicals as well.

Hello Orangecode!

I hope that I can answer your questions from the perspective of no-nonsense/common sense facts.

Question 1: Do you all use a barrier film on the buttons of your machine?

Answer: No, not all electrologists do. Environmental surfaces such as the epilator face should be protected with a barrier OR decontaminated between uses and a daily disinfection. This is according to the AEA’s Infection Control Standards for the Practice of Electrology. See page 24, Section 3, E. at Epilator surfaces are non-critical and decontaminated by being being cleaned between uses and the use of an intermediate-level disinfectant. With the new flat surface epilator faces, a quick cleaning with mild detergent between uses should be sufficient.

Cross-contamination is an issue with repeated touching of surfaces, and aseptic technique will help avoid any cross-contamination.

Question 2: If you have blood on a patient and you clean it all with a wipe, shouldn’t you throw that wipe away? Shouldn’t you use a new wipe each time?

Answer: This is the situation where I use a surface barrier with every client. After using each wipe, I place it on a barrier that is rolled up and disposed of after tx. Aseptic technique would indicate that any time a wipe is used on the client, it is not re-wetted and used again. Many electrologists use little pump-type devices for retrieving skin cleansers and other skin solutions. Placing this wipe on the skin results in a contaminated wipe and it should not then touch the dispenser again.

Disinfectants are available in safe and non-toxic forms. For example, CaviCide is an intermediate-level surface disinfectant which is effective against TB, HBV, HCV, viruses (hydrophilic and lipophilic), bacteria (including MRSA and VRE) and fungi. It can be used for cleaning as well as providing disinfectant value.