Copper Kills Everything, so a Copper Bedrail Could Cut Back on Infections for Hospital Patients
Adam Rifkin stashed this in Science!
Awesome citing of a 4600 year old medical text:
Copper definitely wipes out microbes. "Bacteria, yeasts and viruses are rapidly killed on metallic copper surfaces, and the term "contact killing" has been coined for this process," wrote the authors of an article on copper in Applied and Environmental Microbiology. That knowledge has been around a very long time. The journal article cites an Egyptian medical text, written around 2600-2000 B.C., that cites the use of copper to sterilize chest wounds and drinking water.
Correa's startup, Copper BioHealth, has not yet assessed the railings' impact in Chilean hospitals. But a study of the effects of copper-alloy surfaces in U.S. hospitals' intensive care units, published last year in Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology, showed promising results: Their presence reduced the number of healthcare-acquired infections from 8.1 percent in regular rooms to 3.4 percent in the copper rooms.
Top Reddit comment:
You know what's awesome? A 4600 year old medical text being cited in modern medical literature.
That really is quite awesome.
It's way awesome and instructive.
We need more of those.
I hacked out some copper towel racks for my bathroom a few years ago and noticed that even when they don't dry, the towels don't every smell like mildew (they had before with the standard chrome racks)
That's a good data point. Copper really does kill everything.