Risk Management

Role 

Risk Managers

Needs 

-Risk reduction.

-An air-free warming system.

Why HotDog Excels

HotDog, being air-free, is safer—especially for orthopedics and cardiac—because the sterile field is not disrupted by contaminated waste heat.

 

Frequently Asked Questions from Risk Managers Answered by Dr. Augustine:

A: We didn’t recognize the problem when I was running the company that sold Bair Hugger, and remarkably over 20 years no one else did either. About six years after I left the company, we accidentally discovered the unintended consequence of FAW: the waste hot air vents near the floor, heats the contaminated air resident near the floor, and then rises alongside the table into the sterile surgical field. We became very concerned about patient safety in ultra-clean surgeries such as total joint replacements. A single airborne germ landing on an implant can cause a devastating infection by protecting itself with biofilm.
A: The research speaks for itself.

In the past four years, six studies have been published proving the waste heat contamination problem. One study showed 2000x more particles were present in the air above the surgical site when FAW was used compared to air-free conductive fabric warming (Legg & Hamer, 2013). Not a single study has been published refuting airborne contamination from FAW. I think 3M has purposefully not engaged in this research for obvious reasons. I am not counting Sessler’s study because I have been on record calling it research fraud.

One large outcome study showed a 74% reduction in deep joint infections (3.1% Þ 0.81%), after FAW was stopped. The hospital switched to HotDog (McGovern, 2011). In contrast, there are zero outcome studies showing FAW safety in orthopedic implant surgery.

A: My company is not party to those suits, so I don’t have information beyond what is public. Given the research, however, I’m certainly not surprised.

A: There may ultimately be thousands of plaintiffs—thousands of catastrophically injured patients who will most likely be permanently disabled…if they survive. Of course clinicians should care. No clinician, once he or she has all the facts, will expose a patient to such risk.