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Full text of "Pathogenic Bacteria"

STERILIZATION AND DISINFECTION.         119

atmosphere is constantly changing and replacing the
closeness so universally an accompaniment of fever by
fresh, pure air—a comfort to the patient and a protection
to the doctors and nurses.

After recovery or death one- should rely less upon fu-
migation than upon the disinfection of the walls and
floor, the similar disinfection of the wooden part of the
furniture, and the sterilization of all else. The fumes
of sulphur may do some good—when combined with
steam, much good—but are greatly overestimated, and
the sulphurous vapors-are rapidly giving way to the more
penetrating and germicidal formaldehyde vapor. To
apply this, the room to be sterilized is carefully closed,
the carefully selected apparatus set in action, and the
discharged vapor allowed to act undisturbed for some
hours, after which the windows and doors are all thrown
opeii to fresh air and sunlight.

Instead of the gas, a 40 per cent, solution, which can
be sprayed upon the ceiling, walls, floor, and contents of
the room from a large atomizer, is sometimes used. Ex-
perience has not shown, however, that this possesses any
distinct advantages.

So far as is at present known, the disinfection by form-
aldehyde is complete and leaves nothing to be desired.
Only one point is to be considered, already often men-
tioned—that is, the apparatus. Of those experimented
with by the author, few have given satisfaction.

The Dejecta.—A little thought will direct attention to
those of the dejections which are dangerous to the com-
munity and promote efforts for their complete steriliza-
tion. In cases of diphtheria the vomit, expectorations,
and nasal discharges are most important. They should
be received in old rags or in Japanese paper napkins—
not handkerchiefs or towels—and should be burned. The
sputum of tuberculous patients should either be collected
in a glazed earthen vessel which can be subjected to boil-
ing and disinfection, or, as is an excellent plan, should be
received in Japanese rice-paper napkins, which can at