Asepsis is the state of being free from disease-causing micro-organisms (such as pathogenic bacteria, viruses, pathogenic fungi, and parasites).[1] There are two categories of asepsis: medical and surgical.[1] The modern day notion of asepsis is derived from the older antiseptic techniques, a shift initiated by different individuals in the 19th century who introduced practices such as the sterilizing of surgical tools and the wearing of surgical gloves during operations.[2] The goal of asepsis is to eliminate infection, not to achieve sterility.[1] Ideally, a surgical field is sterile, meaning it is free of all biological contaminants (e.g. fungi, bacteria, viruses), not just those that can cause disease, putrefaction, or fermentation.[1] Even in an aseptic state, a condition of sterile inflammation may develop. The term often refers to those practices used to promote or induce asepsis in an operative field of surgery or medicine to prevent infection.[3]

Hand scrubbing procedure for surgery