Featured Product: AlphaGuard Coveralls

Our featured product today is our AlphaGuard Coveralls. With a unique blend of strength, comfort and protective qualities, these coveralls are suitable for use in controlled environments.

The soft, comfortable AlphaGuard material is ultra clean and exhibits excellent durability. AlphaGuard material is fluid repellent but not recommended for use with chemicals. This material delivers high bacterial filtration rates with low particle counts reducing your contamination concerns. AlphaGuard is also static dissipative, perfect for applications that require an ESD material.

  • Construction Details: Elastic wrist, ankle and back; Serged seams
  • The elastic back minimizes loose material and reduces the hazard of snagging on equipment
  • Latex Free
  • Available in Blue or White Color

Whiteboard Wednesday: Uses Of Ultrasound Technology

Ultrasound imaging has many uses in today’s medical field, watch our Whiteboard Wednesday video below to learn more.

Determining Electroporation Cuvette Gap Size

In our last post on electroporation we discussed the basics of electroporation. The focus of this post will be on determining the correct gap size for electroporation cuvettes. Electroporation cuvettes are disposable cuvettes with aluminum electrodes for the electroporation of eukaryotic cells, bacteria, and yeasts. Electroporation cuvettes are generally available in three different sizes with gap sizes or gap widths of 1mm, 2mm, 4mm. The electroporation cuvettes are sterilized with gamma radiation and are individually wrapped to guarantee sterility. Disposable electroporation cuvettes help save time and eliminate the possibility of carryover contamination. The cuvettes are available in three different sizes with filling volumes of 100 µl  microliters for the white capped 1 mm gap size, 400 µl microliters for the blue capped 2 mm gap size, and 800 µl  microliters for the red capped 4 mm  gap size electroporation cuvette.

Electroporation Cuvette DescriptionGap Width Filling Volume μl (microliters)Cell Types
1 mm Gap Sterile Electroporation Cuvette1 mm (White Cap)100 μl Bacteria
2 mm Gap Sterile Electroporation Cuvette2 mm (Blue Cap)400 μl Yeast
4 mm Gap Sterile Electroporation Cuvette4 mm (Red Cap)800 μl Mammalian Cells

The gap size is the distance between the electrodes and is important when optimizing your electroporation experiment. Gap size is used when determining the field strength (kV)  by using the formula of voltage divided by gap size (cm). If the desired field strength and gap size is known you can also determine what the appropriate voltage would be required to successfully perform the experiment. 

Optimization for electroporation takes many different factors into consideration and determining the cuvette gap size is only one consideration of optimizing the experiment. We will be discussing other optimizations in upcoming posts next year so be sure to subscribe to our blog to stay informed with new updates.

Weekly Wrap For December 2 – December 6, 2013

Proper Handwashing Techniques & Tips

Proper handwashing is one of the most important steps we can take to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to other people. The first full week in December is National Handwashing Awareness Week. To help celebrate and help raise awareness of the importance of handwashing we will share some helpful tips and techniques to stay healthy. What is the right way to wash your hands? 

Benchmark Scientific – Mortexer Vortex Mixer With Multi-Head

This week [December 2, 2013 through December 6, 2013] we are offering a special Buy One, Get One Free“ promotion on our Mortexer™ Vortex Mixer with Multi-Head™ from Benchmark Scientific. When you buy one Mortexer™ Vortex Mixer [BV1005] at the regular price you will receive your second one free. The free unit will automatically be added to your cart with purchase.

What Are The Parts Of A Lead Eyeglass Frame?

Why are lead eyeglasses important? The risk for radiation induced eye injuries are particularly high for health professionals such as interventional cardiologists, interventional radiologists, doctors using fluoroscopy in operating theaters and paramedical personnel who remain close to the patient during the procedure.

Whiteboard Wednesday: What You Should Do After Using PPE Supplies

Today on Whiteboard Wednesday we discuss proper ways to dispose your PPE (personal protection equipment) supplies after use. Properly disposing your PPE supplies in your medical facility is very important for reducing the spread of infection. Be sure to watch our Whiteboard Wednesday video below!

The Different Types of Ultrasound Scans

There are several different types of ultrasound scans depending on the part of the body being examined. There are external, internal and endoscopic ultrasound scans. An external ultrasound involves the use of a an ultrasonic sensor also known as a transducer or transceiver which is placed on the patients skin and is moved over the body part being examined. An ultrasound gel is applied to the skin to improve the movement of the transducer and ensure continuous contact between the skin and the transducer. 

The Different Types of Ultrasound Scans

There are several different types of ultrasound scans depending on the part of the body being examined. There are external, internal and endoscopic ultrasound scans. An external ultrasound involves the use of a an ultrasonic sensor also known as a transducer or transceiver which is placed on the patients skin and is moved over the body part being examined. An ultrasound gel is applied to the skin to improve the movement of the transducer and ensure continuous contact between the skin and the transducer. 

The transducer produces ultrasonic waves in pulses which pass through the skin into the body and are reflected back by various body parts. The reflected waves are detected by the transducer and are then converted by the computer which is connected to the transducer. The computer then produces a real-time image on the monitor and can also be recorded for further examination. External ultrasounds are used to examine the developing fetus  in the pregnant mother’s uterus, kidneys, heart, gallbladder, liver, and the reproductive organs.

Internal Ultrasound scans involve placing an ultrasound probe into the vagina (transvaginal) or rectum (transrectal). During a transvaginal ultrasound procedure, ultrasound waves are used to examine a woman’s reproductive organs, including the uterus, cervix, and vagina. The transrectal ultrasound procedure  (TRUS) or prostate sonogram is an ultrasound technique  that is used in the diagnosis of prostate conditions by sending sound waves through the wall of the rectum into the prostate gland and surrounding tissues.

The endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) or echo-endoscopy is a medical procedure in which endoscopy (insertion of a probe into a hollow organ) is combined with ultrasound to obtain images of the internal organs in the chest and abdomen. Endoscopic ultrasonography is commonly used in the upper digestive and respiratory system. Another procedure is the transesophageal echocardiogram (TEE) which is an alternate way to perform an echocardiogram. During a transesophageal echocardiogram a specialized probe containing an ultrasound transducer is passed through the patient’s esophagus. Endoscopy procedures may be uncomfortable and as a result the patient may be given a sedative or painkiller prior to the procedure.

The FDA  has provided the following guidance for healthcare providers for internal or endoscopic ultrasound procedures, use sterile ultrasound gel for procedures with mucosal contact in which biopsy is not planned, but any possible added bioburden  would be undesirable, or in which mucosal trauma is likely, such as transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) procedures, transvaginal ultrasound procedures and transrectal ultrasound procedures without biopsy. In an FDA press release the following statement was made regarding the usage of ultrasound gel, “Be aware that once a container of sterile or non-sterile ultrasound gel is opened, it is no longer sterile and contamination during ongoing use is possible.”

The FDA is advising health-providers to remember that only unopened ultrasound gel labeled as sterile is safe to use for procedures that require sterile products. Those products that are not labeled with respect to sterility are not sterile, the agency emphasized. Refer to your facility’s infection control or other risk control procedures for more specific information. To request a free sample of our sterile ultrasound sound gel packets please click the button below.

Whiteboard Wednesday: What You Should Do After Using PPE Supplies

Today on Whiteboard Wednesday we discuss proper ways to dispose your PPE (personal protection equipment) supplies after use. Properly disposing your PPE supplies in your medical facility is very important for reducing the spread of infection. Be sure to watch our Whiteboard Wednesday video below!

Benchmark Scientific – Mortexer Vortex Mixer With Multi-Head

The Mortexer™ is MORE than your standard vortex mixer. The unique design of the Multi-Head™ (included) features a traditional cup head for general purpose mixing plus holds up to eight microcentrifuge tubes. The drive system is balanced with Q-Drive™ technology, providing a smooth vortexing action, while minimizing noise and excessive vibration. This results in quieter, more efficient and longer lasting operation. Increased speed, up to 3400 rpm produces an instant vortex of even the largest sample sizes, including 50ml tubes.

 

Technical Data 
Speed Range200 to 3400 rpm
Operating ModesTouch or Continuous
Operating Temperature Range+4 to +65 degrees celsius
Dimensions13 x 16 x 17 cm
5 x 6.3 x 6.7 in.
Weight3.8 kg/ 8.4 lb
Electrical115V AC, 60 Hz, 1.5A
230V AC, 50Hz, 0.75A
230V AC, 60 Hz, 0.75A
Warranty2 years

 

Main Features 

  • Unique Multi-Head™ for general purpose vortexing PLUS holds up to eight microtubes (Patent Pending)
  • Powerful motor for INSTANT vortexing
  • Continuous or “touch” operation
  • Q-Drive™ dynamic balancing system
  • Variable speed from 200 to 3400 rpm
  • Wide variety of accessories

 

Accessories  
BV1000-FLATOptional 3 in. flat head attachment
BV1000-COMBOOptional combination head for one microplate & microtubes (38x1.5 & 28x0.5)
BV1000-H15Optional attachment, 12 x 1.5ml, horizontal
BV1000-H150Optional attachment for 4 x 15ml, horizontal
BV1000-H500Optional attachment for 2 x 50ml, horizontal

 

Other features include: “no-walk” suction feet, cold room/incubator compatibility and spill-proof electronic controls. The Mortexer™ Vortex Mixer with Multi-Head™ features a 2-year warranty. The Mortexer™ Vortex Mixer with Multi-Head™ and accessories are available on our main site.

Disposable UV-Transparent Spectrophotometer Cuvettes

Disposable UV-Transparent spectrophotometer cuvettes are an excellent alternative to fragile, expensive quartz cuvettes for DNA, RNA, and protein analyses between 220-900nm. For example, the disposable BRAND UV-Cuvettes are made from a proprietary polycyclical olefin which is resistant to many aggressive solvents and eliminates the need for tedious maintenance, cleaning, and most importantly the contamination risk associated with quartz cuvettes. Disposable spectrophotometry cuvettes eliminate the risk of cross-contamination from previous analysis which will cause inaccuracies, low sensitivity, and lack of precision. Over time quartz cuvettes can become cracked, chipped or scratched,  choosing a disposable cuvette you will allow you to save valuable time.

The BRAND disposable UV-Transparent Spectrophotometer cuvettes are available in three different sizes; ultra-micro, semi-micro, and macro which offer additional flexibility regarding sample volume (see table below for specifications).

UV-Transparent Spectrophotometry Cuvettes  
Ultra-MicroSemi-MicroMacro
Filling Volume
Minimum70μL1.5mL2.5mL
Maximum 550μL (15mm window)3.0mL4.5mL
850μL (8.5mm window)--
Sample Window Dimensions2mm x 3.5mm (minimum)4.5mm x 23mm10mm x 35mm
Light Path10mm10mm10mm
Range of Application220-900nm220-900nm220-900nm

The ultra-micro cuvettes are available individually-wrapped and independently-certified DNA-, DNase-, and RNase-free for an extra degree of sample protection. The BRAND cuvettes have improved chemical resistance; including most polar organic solvents, as well as a broad range of acids and bases. Polystyrene and methacrylate cuvettes have a lower chemical resistance compared to the BRAND UV-Cuvettes which are compatible with chemicals such as acetone, butanone, DMF, and concentrated hydrochloric acid.

When choosing a cuvette, consistent and repeatable results are essential to any analysis. The BRAND UV-Cuvettes are manufactured from scratch-resistant materials, and are grouped by manufacturing mold cavity number to ensure the lowest variation in extinction coefficient. The BRAND UV-Cuvettes are compatible with most commercial spectrophotometers and photometers without the use of special adapters.

The benefits of disposable cuvettes have many advantages over quartz cuvettes. Quartz cuvettes are expensive and typically cost much more than disposable UV-Cuvettes. Disposable UV-Transparent cuvettes eliminate the risk of sample carryover and can enhance the reliability of analytical results. Traditional quartz cuvettes take approximately 5 minutes to wash and dry, using disposable UV-Transparent spectrophotometer cuvettes will eliminate the need for cleaning and reusing cuvettes which in turn will save time and money.

Our cuvettes are designed to fit all major spectrophotometers and photometers from all the top manufacturers. If you are concerned about unit compatibility, request a free sample to try out before you decide to buy.

Are You Wearing The Right Sized Exam Gloves?

Did you know that it’s essential to wear the right sized protective equipment in your medical setting? Exam gloves are worn daily by many medical professionals and it’s very important these exam gloves fit.

Hand protection is key during routine patient exams, procedures and handling sick patients. It’s important for medical personnel to know the right size exam gloves to use at work. First, you must decide which type of exam glove to use. This can include natural rubber latex, vinyl, nitrile, latex free gloves, etc. Once you have determined the type of exam glove, proper sizing is crucial.

If you have exam gloves that are too big, they can easily be pulled off or liquids can make its way inside the glove. This can also be distracting to the wearer. If you have exam gloves that are too tight, it can cause fatigue and decrease dexterity. The images to the right indicate a pair of exam gloves that are (A) too loose, (B) too tight and (C ) a good fit.

To make sure you’re wearing a pair of the right sized exam gloves, you’ll want to measure your hands. You want to measure around the knuckles of your dominant hand (above the V of your thumb). If you have a measurement of 8 inches, you would wear a size 8 glove or perhaps an 8 ½ to be safe. Many glove brands convert number sizes into XS, S, M, L and XL sizes. See the chart below for recommended sizing conversions: *Measurements are for guidance purposes only. Please consult your glove manufacturer  for their recommended sizing.

SizesXSSMLXL
Men’s Measurements6” - 7”7” - 8”8”- 9”9”- 10”10” - 11”
Women’s Measurements6”- 6 ½” 6 ½” - 7”7” - 7 ½” 7 ½” - 8”8” - 8 ½”
Remember, the fit of your exam gloves can affect your job performance. It’s important to wear the proper sized exam glove that fits your hand, proper glove sizing is key. If you have any questions or comments on selecting the right glove size, please let us know below!

Understanding Hospital-Acquired Infections

What are Hospital-Acquired Infections?

Often referred to as HAI in the medical industry, hospital-acquired infections are a serious and important matter in many medical facilities. A hospital-acquired infection (also known as a nosocomial infection), is when a patient is admitted into a hospital for a reason other than that infection. According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), “approximately 1 out of every 20 hospitalized patients will contract an HAI.”

How are these infections caused? Hospital-acquired infections take place in a medical setting caused by viral, bacterial and fungal pathogens. These infections are acquired by patients while they are receiving medical treatment. An infection can start anywhere in the a patient’s body. Hospital-acquired infections can be developed from surgical procedures, inhaling airborne germs through nose or mouth, urinary tract infections, pneumonia, wound infection, contracting staph infections, etc.

What can your hospital do to prevent these infections from occurring? Prevention is key! Many hospitals and medical centers have instilled infection control programs to help prevent the spread of infection. Taking extra precaution in high risk surgical procedures such as urinary catheterization is important. Sterile supplies and equipment are always a good idea to prevent cross-contamination. A few basic infection control tips: thorough hand washing, using disposable supplies, wearing proper protection apparel, using sterilized medical instruments, etc.

Some patients are at greater risk than others for example, children, elderly and those with weak immune systems. Taking greater precaution around these patients is important.

Hospital-acquired infections are preventable with proper infection control standards and PPE supplies to support those standards. Have a questions about this post? Let us know in the comment box below.