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Hidden reservoirs of pathogens in dental settings


Silpi Chatterjee1,*, Sonal Saigal2, Ankur Bhargava3, Daya Shankar4, Asim Mustafa Khan5, & Safiya Fatima Khan6



1Department of Public Health Dentistry, Hazaribag college of Dental Sciences and Hospital, Jharkhand, India; 2Department of Oral Pathology and microbiology and forensic odontology,Dental Institute, RIMS, Ranchi, India; 3Department of Oral Pathology and microbiology and forensic odontology, Hazaribag college of Dental Sciences and Hospital, Jharkhand, India; 4Department of rosthodontics and Crwon & Bridge. Hazaribag college of Dental Sciences and Hospital, Jharkhand, India; 5Department of Biomedical Dental Sciences Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University; 6Department of Periodontology Faculty of Dental Sciences, Ramaiah University of Applied Sciences;Corresponding author*



Dr Silpi Chatterjee E-mail: dr.silpi510@gmail.com;


Article Type

Research Article



Received December 5, 2020; Revised December 31, 2020; Accepted January 2, 2020, Published January 31, 2021



Nosocomial infections are a major concern to both clinicians and health care seekers. Investigations have suggested that laptops & mobile phones may contribute to cross-contamination and can serve as vehicles for infection transmission. Therefore, it is of interest to document the data on hidden reservoirs such as mobile phones and laptops of pathogens in dental settings at the Hazaribag college of dental sciences and Hospital, Jharkhand. The samples were collected from 25 laptops and 25 mobile phones from dentists working in a dental college in Hazaribag city. The samples were collected aseptically using sterile cotton swabs dipped in sterile saline by rotating the swabs on the keyboard surfaces of laptops and mobile phones, inoculated into Brain Heart Infusion broth, vortexed for 1 minute in Fischer Vortex Genie 2 on highest setting & streaked immediately on 5% sheep blood agar plates and were incubated at 370C for 24 hours aerobically. The isolates were identified based on the colony morphology, colony characteristics and biochemical reactions. The bacterial species isolated were Staphylococcus aureus, Coagulase negative Staphylococcus, Bacillus species, Enterococci, Micrococci, and Pseudomonas etc. Predominant species isolated was Staphylococcus aureus and least was Micrococci. Higher percentage of organisms was found at the Department of Periodontics, Endodontics and least was found in Department of Public Health Dentistry. The percentage and type of organism isolated from keyboards of laptops and mobile phones were similar. Thus, laptops and mobile phones act as vehicles for transfer of potential pathogens associated with dental hospitals. Disinfecting the hands prior to examination of patients and disinfection of laptops and mobiles with alcohol wipes should be done to prevent nosocomial infections.



Disinfection; infection; microbial contamination; pathogenic organism.



Chatterjee et al. Bioinformation 17(1): 73-79 (2021)


Edited by

P Kangueane






Biomedical Informatics



This is an Open Access article which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. This is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License.