Staff & patient safety

How to choose the right surgical gown

By : Mölnlycke Health Care, January 9 2012Posted in: Staff & patient safety

A surgical gown is designed to prevent microbial contamination of the surgical wound. It is important to choose the right gown to meet the needs of the surgical procedure. The choice of surgical gown is a balance between protection and comfort.

Protection – the most important criteria

The level of protection needed depends on:

  • Amount of fluid
  • Duration of procedure
  • Risk of infection
  • Expected wear and tear on the gown

Comfort – a higher level of comfort is needed for longer procedures to keep you performing at your best

Comfort factors are:

  • Softness
  • Breathability
  • Conformability
  • Design and fit of the gown

Different levels of protection to fit your needs

BARRIER® surgical gowns provide different levels of protection – from a basic to an advanced level for high-risk procedures.

Our surgical gowns are available in both standard and high-performance designs. The difference is the values that the gown has achieved according to the EN 137951 standard.

  • Standard Performance (SP) – for short procedures and low volumes of liquid
  • High Performance (HP) – for long procedures and high volumes of liquid

BARRIER High Performance surgical gowns are polyethylene-reinforced in the critical zone, in front and in the sleeves, or impermeable all over, to maximise the protection against contamination of the surgical wound.

Our gowns comply with both the EN 137951 and AAMI2 standards.


  1. European Directive EN 13795-3:2006: The European harmonized standard specifying requirements for single-use and reusable gowns, drapes and clean air suits used as medical devices for patients, clinical staff and equipment and intended to prevent the transmission of infective agents between patients and clinical staff during invasive surgical procedures.
  2. ANSI/AAMI PB-70:2003: Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation. AAMI is the US reference standard establishing a system of classification for protective apparel and drapes based on their liquid barrier performance and specifies related labelling requirements and standardised test methods.
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