Catheters are a common feature in hospitals, particularly for patients on dialysis or undergoing chemotherapy. These devices can be inserted in the body through the skin or an opening in the body. The exposed area after the needle penetrates the skin is prone to various water and airborne infections. Of the two, water is the more significant risk as it can enter the bloodstream which can result in infections and worst case scenario sepsis (a potentially life-threatening condition caused by the body's response to an infection).

As a shield to help you reduce the risk of infection from waterborne bacteria, products like waterproof PICC line protectors are manufactured to keep the catheter site dry and free from germs.

Here are six waterborne pathogens that are prone to spread infections:

This diarrhea-inducing parasite is often transmitted through swimming pools and water playgrounds. The reports of outbreaks due to this parasite doubled in the U.S. from 14 in 2014 to 32 in 2016.

These rod-shaped bacteria commonly infect hot tub users by burrowing into hair follicles, subsequently causing red, itchy bumps on the skin.

These highly contagious bacteria are found in lakes, ponds, and beaches. It has been a routine cause of nearly 500,000 illnesses in the U.S. annually. Swallowing contaminated water can cause gastrointestinal illness with symptoms like fever, nausea, vomiting, cramps, and bloody stools.

These bacteria infect the airways, not the gut, and can be transmitted by the warm, steamy air of hot tubs. The bacteria induce a virulent form of pneumonia called Legionnaires' disease.

Symptoms caused by Norovirus include stomach pain, fever, vomiting, and diarrhea. The virus can spread via contact with the fecal matter of infected people, which can contaminate surfaces, food, and water.

These bacteria thrive in the summertime. Excessive use of fertilizer on beaches, lakes and rivers, promotes this bacterial growth. It can irritate the eyes, skin, and throats of swimmers.

Regardless of the medium they enter, people with devices like IV and PICC should take extra care when dealing with water. Dialysis Care Online specializes in producing waterproof Shower Shields for patients with ports, bandages or wounds. These shields are clinically proven and disposable. Order your pack of Shower Shield now.


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