Droplet fate in indoor environments, or can we prevent the spread of infection?

  title={Droplet fate in indoor environments, or can we prevent the spread of infection?},
  author={Lidia Morawska},
  journal={Indoor air},
  volume={16 5},
  • L. Morawska
  • Published 1 October 2006
  • Environmental Science
  • Indoor air
UNLABELLED When considering how people are infected and what can be done to prevent the infections, answers from many disciplines are sought: microbiology, epidemiology, medicine, engineering, and physics. There are many pathways to infection spread, and among the most significant from the epidemiological point of view is airborne transport. Microorganisms can become airborne when droplets are generated during speech, coughing, sneezing, vomiting, or atomization of feces during sewage removal… 

Figures and Tables from this paper

Viral infections acquired indoors through airborne, droplet or contact transmission.

The lack of regulations, threshold values and standardized detection methods for viruses in indoor environments, make both research and interpretation of results difficult in this field, hampering infection control efforts.

Investigation on the evaporation and dispersion of human respiratory droplets with COVID-19 virus

Assessment of airborne transmission from coughing processes with thermal plume adjacent to body and radiators on effectiveness of social distancing

The new coronavirus disease COVID-19 has caused a worldwide pandemic to be declared in a very short period of time. The complexity of the infection lies in asymptomatic carriers that can

Effects of purifiers on the airborne transmission of droplets inside a bus

Analyzing aerosol transport in a bus with air-conditioning showed that droplets with a size of 1–20 μm have essentially the same deposition characteristics, and the location of the infected passenger affects the distribution of droplets' transport and the effectiveness of a purifier in removing droplets.

Inhaled aerosols: Their role in COVID-19 transmission, including biophysical interactions in the lungs

  • T. Sosnowski
  • Environmental Science
    Current Opinion in Colloid & Interface Science
  • 2021

Why airborne transmission hasn't been conclusive in case of COVID-19? An atmospheric science perspective

Humidity Reduces Rapid and Distant Airborne Dispersal of Viable Viral Particles in Classroom Settings

A method to detect viable virus particles from aerosols by using an aerosolized bacteriophage Phi6 in combination with its host Pseudomonas phaseolicola, which when seeded on agar plates acts as a virus detector that can be placed at a range of distances away from an aerosoli-generating source.

How far droplets can move in indoor environments--revisiting the Wells evaporation-falling curve.

The results indicate that a droplet's size predominately dictates its evaporation and movement after being expelled, and there is a need to examine the air distribution systems in hospital wards for controlling both airborne and droplet-borne transmitted diseases.

Control of airborne infectious disease in buildings: Evidence and research priorities.

An overarching need for investment to implement building controls is identified and their effectiveness on infection in well-characterized and real-world settings is evaluated, supported by specific, methodological advances.



Spread and prevention of some common viral infections in community facilities and domestic homes

Examination of the dispersal, persistence and control of some common viruses in the domestic home and in community facilities finds growing evidence that person-to-person transmission via the hands and contaminated fomites plays a key role in the spread of viral infections.

Microbiological hazards of household toilets: droplet production and the fate of residual organisms.

The detection of bacteria and firuses falling out onto surfaces in bathrooms after flushing indicated that they remain airborne long enough to settle on surfaces throughout the bathroom.

Bioaerosols from municipal and animal wastes: background and contemporary issues.

This review synthesizes the information related to bioaerosols and addresses the contemporary issues associated with bio aerosols from municipal and animal wastes, with a focus on pathogens.

Transmission of viruses via contact in ahousehold setting: experiments using bacteriophage φX174 as a model virus

The aim of this study was to elucidate how viruses can be transmitted from a primary contact person to further individuals and Bacteriophage straight phiX174 was chosen as a model virus.

The size distribution of droplets in the exhaled breath of healthy human subjects.

  • R. PapineniF. Rosenthal
  • Medicine, Environmental Science
    Journal of aerosol medicine : the official journal of the International Society for Aerosols in Medicine
  • 1997
C coughing produced the largest droplet concentrations and nose breathing the least, although considerable intersubject variability was observed, and the existence of larger sized droplets in the exhaled breath was confirmed.

Evidence of airborne transmission of the severe acute respiratory syndrome virus.

Airborne spread of the virus appears to explain this large community outbreak of SARS in Hong Kong, and future efforts at prevention and control must take into consideration the potential for airborne spread of this virus.

Effect of relative humidity on the airborne survival of rhinovirus-14.

It is suggested that under certain environmental conditions, notably high relative humidity, air may act as a vehicle for the spread of rhinovirus infections.

Microbiology of hospital toilets.

Aerosol transmission of rhinovirus colds.

The results suggest that contrary to current opinion, rhinovirus transmission, at least in adults, occurs chiefly by the aerosol route.