TL;DR – Use a N95 mask + eye protection to protect against airborne viruses, either alone might be insufficient.
Looked for interventional studies testing whether face masks and eye protection work in humans to protect against airborne viral particles.
Found a small study <1> exposing subjects (n = 28, avg age 30.5 years) to monodispersed live attenuated influenza vaccine particles and testing subjects using RT-PCR and culture in nasal washes. Subjects were placed in front of a vibrating-orifice aerosol generator for 20 minutes generating 4.9 micron particles.
- No precautions: 4 out of 4 infected.
- Ocular exposure only: 4 out of 4 infected.
- Surgical mask only (3M 1818): 5 out of 5 infected.
- Surgical mask with eye protection (Z87 Uvex non-vented): 5 out of 5 infected.
- N95 mask (3M 1860/1860S) only: 3 out of 5 infected.
- N95 mask with eye protection: 1 out of 5 infected.
1.2010 "Transocular Entry of Seasonal Inﬂuenza–Attenuated Virus Aerosols and the Efﬁcacy of N95 Respirators, Surgical Masks, and Eye Protection in Humans"
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