Media Coverage of 3M™ Bair Hugger™ Therapy

Minneapolis Star Tribune here: FDA tells hospitals that 3M surgical warming blanket is OK for use

It has found no "conclusive evidence" between the Bair Hugger device and higher surgical infection risk.

The Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday recommended that hospitals and doctors continue using 3M's forced-air warming blankets in surgery, despite thousands of lawsuits that allege the devices increase the risk of serious surgical infections.

The Bair Hugger Forced Air Warming Device, manufactured by Maplewood-based 3M Co., is a widely used system that is supposed to promote post-surgical healing and cut down on infections by maintaining a patient's body temperature in surgery.

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3M again named among world’s most ethical companies

For the fourth consecutive year, 3M has been recognized globally for its ethics and integrity in doing business.

The announcement can be found here.

The Ethisphere Institute, which assesses companies on a variety of factors, scored 3M at the top of the list on citizenship, corporate responsibility, ethics and compliance.

“At 3M, it's not enough to just win in business - it matters how you do it," said Kristen Ludgate, 3M's vice president of Associate General Counsel and chief compliance officer. "Customers want to do business with companies they can trust, and achieving that trust requires the help of all employees. I'm proud to say our people live 3M's Code of Conduct every day by making ethical decisions and speaking up if they aren't sure what to do."

In this story. Forbes magazine listed the companies ranked by the Ethisphere Institute and outlined the criteria for making the list.


Surgical Products magazine: Arguing In Favor Of Forced-Air Warming:

Pushing Back Against Claims To The Contrary, 3M Says The Bair Hugger System Is Safe And Effective

Forced-air warming (FAW) is a commonly employed method for keeping patients safe from body temperature drops that occur when they’re anesthetized during surgery. Devices such as the Bair Hugger System, manufactured by 3M, are commonplace in hospitals, employed on a daily basis to aid in vital patient temperature management.

In recent years, the Bair Hugger and similar devices have come under criticism from those who maintain the moving air can contribute to a higher risk of surgical site infections. Perhaps by no coincidence, some of those criticisms have been leveled by manufacturers offering an alternative to forced-air warming systems.

To get the perspective of strong advocates on the safety and value of forced-air warming devices, Surgical Products interviewed Al Van Duren, the scientific affairs director of the infection prevention division of 3M.

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Los Angeles Times: 3M Bair Hugger warming system used in trauma ward for U.S. soldiers in Iraq

BAGHDAD — For all their horror, wars are learning laboratories for trauma medicine. The knowledge that U.S. military doctors have gained in Iraq is helping them save the lives of more combat wounded than ever before.

A critically injured Army sergeant who arrived recently at Ibn Sina Hospital in Baghdad's Green Zone was a case in point. A sniper's bullet had entered his back and clipped off the side wall of a vein just above the liver that returns blood from the lower body to the heart. Had he arrived at virtually any other hospital in the world, the sergeant probably would have bled to death.

But Army Col. Richard Briggs, a veteran of several wars, had the combat zone experience and the state-of-the-art tools to stabilize the patient after a two-hour operation.

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ABC News: 3M Bair Hugger warming system helps save toddler

She wasn’t breathing, her heart wasn’t beating and her mother said she was “frozen stiff” when she found her lying facedown in the snow.

On a frigid Canadian night, 13-month-old Erika wandered outdoors in nothing but a diaper and T-shirt. But despite the little girl’s exposure to subzero temperatures, plastic surgeon Dr. Gary Lobay says “she almost certainly will walk again.”

Erika had been sleeping in a bed with her mother and a 3-year-old sister at a family friend’s house. The 25-pound toddler apparently got out of bed without waking anyone, opened a back door that had been left unlatched, and walked out into the snowy, frigid night.

It wasn’t until 3 a.m. that Erika’s mother, Leyla Nordby, discovered her daughter. “I just saw something lying in the snow. And I ran to the snow and I saw Erika on her belly. I picked her up. She was frozen. I ran in the house. I wrapped her in a blanket,” Nordby said.

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WBUR Boston: 3M Bair Hugger warming system warms runners at Boston Marathon

BOSTON Lauri Perry, of Austin, Texas, is used to getting really hot when she runs. She thought she was being cautious ahead of Monday’s Boston Marathon, when she added a layer over her running top.

“I started out with something on and I threw it away at mile six because it was warmer. Then the rain started at about mile 10 or so, and then the wind got worse,” Perry said, her voice trailing off.

By the time Perry crossed the finish line on Boylston Street she was soaking wet, numb, blue and shaking.

“Uncontrollable shaking,” Perry repeated with emphasis. “I couldn’t even hold my drink because it was splashing out.”

Lauri Perry, of Austin, Texas, went into the medical tent to warm up after finishing the Boston Marathon Monday. (Martha Bebinger/WBUR)

Perry has run the Boston Marathon five times and notes with some pride that she has never needed medical assistance after the race. But Monday, when a member of the medical team asked if she wanted to step inside the big white tent, she gave in.

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The Gleaner: Shaggy Foundation donates 3M Bair Hugger warming systems, medical equipment

Raising the temperature in the operating room to prevent hypothermia in burn patients has been a common practice for many years at Loyola University Health System in Maywood, Ill. But Sharon Valtman, BSN, RN, CNOR, a team leader in the operating room for 21 years, wondered if more could be done. 

So last year she suggested to Richard Gamelli, MD, FACS, medical director of the hospital’s burn unit, that burn patients be warmed an hour or more before scheduled surgery, using a device formerly used only in the operating room. Called the Bair Hugger, the device carries warm air through a hose to a blanket draped over the patient.

Gamelli agreed and asked Julie Liberio, MSN, RN, staff nurse and clinical educator, to create a pre-operative protocol for burn patients. 

Liberio spoke with Valtman and established the protocol in March 2013 that all patients in the burn unit undergoing surgery be pre-warmed with the Bair Hugger.

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Nurse.com: Before surgery, 3M Bair Hugger warming system preps patients to prevent hypothermia

Raising the temperature in the operating room to prevent hypothermia in burn patients has been a common practice for many years at Loyola University Health System in Maywood, Ill. But Sharon Valtman, BSN, RN, CNOR, a team leader in the operating room for 21 years, wondered if more could be done.

So last year she suggested to Richard Gamelli, MD, FACS, medical director of the hospital’s burn unit, that burn patients be warmed an hour or more before scheduled surgery, using a device formerly used only in the operating room. Called the Bair Hugger, the device carries warm air through a hose to a blanket draped over the patient.

Gamelli agreed and asked Julie Liberio, MSN, RN, staff nurse and clinical educator, to create a pre-operative protocol for burn patients.

Liberio spoke with Valtman and established the protocol in March 2013 that all patients in the burn unit undergoing surgery be pre-warmed with the Bair Hugger.

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Topeka Capitol Journal: Man, 80, warmed by 3M Bair Hugger warming system after wreck in freezing water

The officers jumped into ice-cold water to pull Fergel to safety. McEntire and Jones worked together to gain access to the trapped man. Both windows on the driver's side were broken out during the accident. Jones was able to crawl through the driver's side back window after McEntire slipped his belt off.

Fergel said the officers after helping him out of the car had “a terrible time” getting him up the creek bank because it was so tall and steep, and conditions were so slick.

He said that by the time he was loaded into a waiting ambulance ambulance, “I was freezing really bad.”

Fergel said it felt good when rescue workers warmed him up using a Bair Hugger warming unit, which remained “turned on for a long time.”

He said he suffered no broken bones, though he could still feel pain Tuesday to his sternum. Fergel said that may have been caused by his car’s airbag, though he wasn’t sure if that activated during the crash.

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Eureka Journal: 3M Bair Hugger warming system used to treat hypothermic man after car accident

Since he had been warmed up a little during the ambulance ride, his core temperature was likely down in the 70s when emergency workers and local farmer Jeff Shady first pulled him out of the creek, according to Harman.

They used a range of tools to rapidly increase his body temperature, including injecting warm fluid directly into his veins and wrapping him in an inflatable blanket called a Bair Hugger that surrounded him with heated air.

 “It’s pretty unusual to see someone come in on death’s door that we can save,” Harman said. “Everything went about as well as it possibly could.”

Szalat arranged a meeting Sept. 21 at Jones Regional Medical Center to say “thanks” to the emergency workers, doctors and nurses who saved him and to tell his story.

“They really did a tremendous job,” he said. “I’m standing here because of them.”

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