Cloth-covered chiropractic treatment tables as a source of allergens and pathogenic microbes

J Chiropr Med. 2008 Mar;7(1):34-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jcme.2007.10.003.


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.