This article [available free online] was just published in the March 2008 issue of the Journal of Chiropractic Medicine:
Evans MW, Campbell A, Husbands C, Breshears J, Ndetan H, Rupert R. Cloth-covered chiropractic treatment tables as a source of allergens and pathogenic microbes. J Chiropr Med 2008; 7(1): 34-38.
Objective: Vinyl chiropractic tables have been found to harbor pathogenic bacteria, but wiping with a simple disinfection agent can significantly reduce the risk of bacteria. The aim of this study was to assess the presence of microbes and other allergens or pathogens on cloth chiropractic tables.
Methods: Cloth-covered tables in a chiropractic college teaching clinic were selected. Samples were taken from the facial piece and hand rests with RODAC plates containing nutrient agar, followed by confirmatory testing when indicated.
Results: Numerous microbacteria strains were found, including Staphylococcus aureus and Propionibacterium. Allergen-producing molds, including Candida, were also found.
Conclusion: Cloth tables were shown to contain pathogenic microbacteria and allergens. The chiropractic profession should establish an infection control protocol relevant to treatment tables and discard use of cloth-covered treatment tables in this process.
Last year the same authors published this article:
Evans MW, Jr., Breshears J, Campbell A, Husbands C, Rupert R. Assessment and risk reduction of infectious pathogens on chiropractic treatment tables. Chiropr Osteopat 2007; 15(1):8. [Open Access]
And here is another one by two of the authors:
Evans MW, Breshears J. Attitudes and behaviors of chiropractic college students on hand sanitizing and treatment table disinfection: Results of initial survey and focus group. JACA Online 2007 May-June;44(4):13-23.
Check both of these articles out here, as well as this one:
Bifero AE, Prakash J, Bergin J. The role of chiropractic adjusting tables as reservoirs for microbial diseases. Am J Infect Control April 2006; 34(3):155-157.
Also, have a look at this post on Salami Publishing.
Filed under: Chiropractic/CAM