Israeli researchers reported that portable X-ray equipment (radiograph) is also involved in spreading of drug-resistant bacteria in the intensive care unit (ICU), the Reuters Health reported. Researchers initially observed technicians performing 173 chest radiographs and found that 39% of portable X-ray machines were contaminated with drug-resistant bacteria.

Dr. Phillip D. Levin of Hadassah Hebrew University Hospital, Jerusalem and colleagues are involved in this study.

After the observation period, the researcher instituted an educational intervention directed at technicians was instituted, and its effect on infection control and machine contamination was measured.

Adequate infection control was observed in 48 of 113 subsequent radiographs (42%) and none of the 29 machine samples yielded resistant Gram-negative bacteria.

The investigators conducted a follow-up study 5 months later, and found only 12 of 120 radiographs (10%) were conducted with adequate infection control and 7 of 14 surface samples (50%) yielded resistant bacteria.