It depends on who you ask.
Can we guess your role in the OR based on your answer?
If you said, “infectious cells and respiratory irritants”
You might be an OR Nurse.
Did you know that surgery staff experience symptoms of respiratory illness at TWICE the rate of other hospital personnel? This is thought to be a consequence of prolonged exposure to cautery plume. Further, OR staff may be exposed to viable HPV and Hepatitis A cells in smoke generated from tissue ablation.
If you said, “toxic gases like formaldehyde and benzene”
You might be an anesthesiologist.
Anesthesiologists and CRNAs have a unique understanding of the affect of certain chemicals on respiration. They are also some of the most vulnerable members of the surgical team, as they are often closer to the site of the surgical smoke and are exposed for longer period of time.
If you said “visibility and odor”
You might be a surgeon (or a patient).
In addition to the biological hazards posed by surgical smoke, there is also the very real danger of reduced visibility for surgeons during the operation. Would you feel safe under the knife knowing your surgeons’ line of sight may be compromised?
If you said "everything!"
You're one of us.
There's no excuse for surgical smoke in the OR. Are you ready for the ideal solution?