Medical Scrubs – A History of Comfort and Style
When walking down the streets today, it is easy to identify a medical professional by the cotton scrub set they are probably wearing. On television and in the movies, doctors, nurses and other health professionals are usually wearing some type of scrub uniform. In fact, most, if not all, hospitals require medical staff to wear scrubs while at work. Cheap scrub set are so popular that they have become the standard hospital attire. Scrubs, however, have not been around forever.
Everyone is familiar with the typical nurse’s uniform. For example, the stereotypical nurse is generally portrayed wearing a white uniform, a white hat, and some type of red cross. Although the typical nurse’s uniform dates far back in history, the creation of a scrub type uniform for doctors is a relatively recent phenomenon. During the early years of surgery, doctors would practice in their street clothes. Sometimes a butcher’s apron would be worn to keep blood off of the doctor’s street clothes. The sight of the blood and other bodily fluids on the doctor’s clothing was not problematic, but a sign that a doctor had many patients and was, therefore, successful.
As years past, the medical profession became more aware of the risk of infection and the importance of keeping medical environments sterile. Surgeons walking around with dry blood and guts on his clothing is definitely not sterile. As an attempt to decrease infections in 1940’s, doctors working in operating rooms began wearing antiseptic gowns to protect their clothing while in the operating room. The new gowns worn by surgeons were white. The color white is nice because it feels crisp and clean. White surgical gowns, however, seem less clean and sterile when they are doused in blood and body fluids. For many people, the contrast between the white uniform and the blood and bodily fluids was offensive. For this reason, the gowns worn by surgeons eventually became green. The “surgical green” as it is often referred to, is a good color for surgery because it blends colors better than white and reduces eye strain.
At this point in scrub history the old fashioned white doctor’s uniform evolved into the standard surgical green uniform. Such a uniform is seen worn by the doctors in old shows such as MASH. Surgical greens were so called because they were worn by surgeons and, of course, they were green. Over time, people began referring to the surgical greens as scrubs because they were originally worn when people “scrubbed in” for surgery.
Today, scrubs are worn by almost all medical professionals and they are no longer just green. Many hospitals utilize different colored scrubs for different types of medical professionals. Scrubs no longer come in one standard style either. Medical professionals have access to different styles of scrubs in a variety of patterns and colors. Scrub shoppers can choose between different brand name styles of cheap scrubs including brand names like Barco Metro Scrubs, Landau Scrubs, Cherokee Medical Scrubs, Cherokee Scrubs and Cherokee Scrub Pants.
As the medical field advances in skill and technology, the scrub uniform has been forced to evolve in order to keep pace.
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