We all know a “bloviator.” The best example is Cliff Claven from “Cheers.”
They like to try to impress people with their great volume of knowledge and never miss a chance to do so, often quite verbosely and arrogantly. When confronted with the bizarre concept of The Bloviator being wrong, they get louder and say even more silly nonfactual things.
Some time ago (this has been in the que to write up for too long!!)
What most of us already told them:
“Drs. at USC and UCLA say masking didn’t prevent transmission of the China Wuhan Virus.”
We can stop right there and say we already knew that. How? Because the day before the pandemic, it was the policy and guidelines of the CDC et al that masking did not stop the transmission of respiratory viruses and NOTHING has changed in the science since then.
But then enters The Bloviator:
He sites a study that he alleges PROVES that masking worked to slow/prevent/stop/hinder/obfuscate the spread of the China Wuhan Virus.
The irony is that he called people “Idiots” if they didn’t believe the study. (this will come next) and he makes the claim that without masking “operative infections would kill everyone”.
I state correctly that there is almost no difference in post operative infections and provide a study that shows that.
Now the irony is that there is an “idiot” that chimes in and states they don’t believe that study.
“A study done 30 years ago is not valid blah blah blah blah and why then do Drs. wear masks….”
So, below are a number of studies. It could go on ad nauseum but there’s no need for that
Disposable surgical face masks for preventing surgical wound infection in clean surgery | Cochrane
Overall, we found very few studies and identified no new trials for this latest update. We analysed a total of 2106 participants from the three studies we found. All three studies showed that wearing a face mask during surgery neither increases nor decreases the number of wound infections occurring after surgery. We conclude that there is no clear evidence that wearing disposable face masks affects the likelihood of wound infections developing after surgery.
Quality of the evidence
The findings from this review cannot be generalised for several reasons: the studies included only looked at clean surgery, some of the studies did not specify what type of face mask was used and one of the studies did not involve many participants therefore making the findings less credible. The quality of the studies we found was low overall. The way in which participants were selected for the studies was not always completely random, which means the authors’ judgements could have influenced the results. More research in this field is needed before making further conclusions about the use of face masks in surgery.
So in this study, they didn’t like the quality of the evidence of the other studies that they reviewed, but they absolutely destroyed The Bloviator’s position that without masking in a surgery, EVRYONE WOULD DIE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Postoperative wound infections and surgical face masks: a controlled study
It has never been shown that wearing surgical face masks decreases postoperative wound infections. On the contrary, a 50% decrease has been reported after omitting face masks. The present study was designed to reveal any 30% or greater difference in general surgery wound infection rates by using face masks or not. During 115 weeks, a total of 3,088 patients were included in the study. Weeks were denoted as “masked” or “unmasked” according to a random list. After 1,537 operations performed with face masks, 73 (4.7%) wound infections were recorded and, after 1,551 operations performed without face masks, 55 (3.5%) infections occurred. This difference was not statistically significant (p greater than 0.05) and the bacterial species cultured from the wound infections did not differ in any way, which would have supported the fact that the numerical difference was a statistically “missed” difference. These results indicated that the use of face masks might be reconsidered. Masks may be used to protect the operating team from drops of infected blood and from airborne infections, but have not been proven to protect the patient operated by a healthy operating team.
Oops !!! Did you notice the part where they did NOT say that everyone died without a masked surgical team?
Want another one?
Use of Surgical Masks in the Operating Room: A Review of the Clinical Effectiveness and Guidelines
The use of surgical face masks by staff in the operating room is presumed to reduce the frequency of surgical site infections. The evidence identified and included in this report finds no evidence basis for this presumption. The consensus of the systematic reviews included in this report is that there is a paucity of data on this topic, and that current evidence is lacking for altering clinical practice. The included guidelines of this report are also in agreement that the long standing practice of wearing surgical face masks in the operating room should continue despite the lack of clinical efficacy evidence.
No evidence was identified that examined a potential role for surgical face masks in protecting staff from infectious material encountered in the operating room. In the absence of available clinical evidence the guidelines recommend wearing masks of a type suitable to the procedure being performed and in accordance with applicable health and safety regulations.
“The use of surgical face masks by staff in the operating room is presumed to reduce the frequency of surgical site infections. The evidence identified and included in this report finds no evidence basis for this presumption”
There it is again !!!!
SURGICAL SITE INFECTIONS IN THE OPERATING ROOM
Members of the surgical team entering the OR when an operation is about to begin or already underway should wear a mask and headgear which fully covers hair, sideburns, and neckline. Experimental studies using tracer particles have shown that bacteria can be shed from hair, exposed skin, and mucous membranes of both OR personnel and the patient’s skin. This is why we use barriers (masks, gowns, hood, and drapes) in the OR. But besides sterile gloves and impervious surgical gowns, no clinical studies have proved that the use of these barriers has led to a decrease in SSI rates. They are nonetheless recommended not only for the purpose of reducing the shedding of microorganisms in the OR but also as part of standard precautions. Barriers are most important when the procedure implies the insertion of an implant/prosthesis.
“no clinical studies have proved that the use of these barriers has led to a decrease in SSI rates”
Is that enough?????
Oh, and as to why Drs. wear masks, stethoscopes, white lab coats……..
Because other studies show that it makes patients more comfortable. Yes, literal theater.
Please, don’t be The Bloviator…….
Unmasking the surgeons: the evidence base behind the use of facemasks in surgery – Charlie Da Zhou, Pamela Sivathondan, Ashok Handa, 2015 (sagepub.com)
Unmasking the Surgical Mask: Does It Really Work? | MedPage Today
Is Routine Use of a Face Mask Necessary in the Operating Room? | Anesthesiology | American Society of Anesthesiologists (asahq.org)
If masks don’t work, then why do surgeons wear them? A Surgeon Explains – BSNEWS
Do we really need surgical masks and caps in the operating room? (chrismcculloh.com)
Disposable surgical face masks for preventing surgical wound infection in clean surgery – PubMed (nih.gov)