It could almost be a scene from the latest Star Trek movie.
The patient is prepared in a state-of-the-art operating theatre and ready for surgery when in walks the surgeon – dressed as if ready for a journey into space.
But orthopaedic surgeon Benjamin Bloch’s mission has nothing to do with discovering new planets – he’s more interested on beating infectious bacteria here on earth.
So, for every joint operation he carries out at Spire Nottingham Hospital in Tollerton, Mr Bloch gets into the Stryker Flyte Steri-shield hood.
“It is part of my strategy to keep infection rates as low as they possibly can be,” he said. “The hood, which is worn with a normal sterile gown, is just the start.
“At Spire Nottingham we also use ultra clean air flow, alcoholic surgical skin preparation, meticulous soft tissue handling and look to achieve the shortest time a patient can be in surgery.
“An infection in a joint replacement can have terrible consequences so I think it is important I keep the risk at an absolute minimum. The new operating theatres at Spire Nottingham are obviously very important when it comes to infection control.
“However, the Stryker equipment protects the patient from contamination from bacteria that we all carry on our skin while also protecting me from potential blood-borne infections that the patient may be carrying.”
And there is no chance of him getting hot under the collar while working under surgery lights as the suit is equipped with an interior fan that blows air from the top down to the bottom of the surgical gown, so keeping the surgeon cool while keeping bacteria away from the patient.
Although not alone, Mr Bloch is, at the moment, in the minority when it comes to using the Stryker hoods.
However, he predicts that they will become more popular in the future as developments make the hood lighter and bring down the cost of the outfits.
Photo: Orthopaedic surgeon Mr Benjamin Bloch ready for action in in his Striker hood