There are a number of different types of sterilization equipment available to help medical professionals keep their facilities clean. Some of these devices include disinfectants, germicidal lamps, sterilants, steam sterilizers and ultraviolet (UV) light sterilization.
Role of Disinfectants in Ensuring Device Safety
The use of disinfectants is often necessary for a variety of reasons. For example, certain bacteria and microorganisms can cause serious infections if they are left on or in surfaces that come into contact with the patient’s body. This is especially true for devices that are in close contact with the human body such as syringes, needles, and intravenous tubes.
Chemical sterilants are also used to sterilize items that are difficult or impossible to heat. They can be either liquids or gases and can be applied directly to the item being sterilised. Ethylene oxide gas, or ETO, is an important sterilant that many manufacturers use to keep their devices safe. It can be used to disinfect or sterilize a wide variety of objects and has many advantages.
For example, it can be used on a wide range of materials without damaging them and has the ability to penetrate packaging. However, it is not a good choice for high-risk environments because it can damage some types of plastics and may not be compatible with the material being sterilized.
Advantages and Considerations of Dry Heat Sterilization
Dry heat, or thermal sterilization, is another popular way to sterilize devices. It can be used in a wide range of applications, has good cycle flexibility, and is available in single-dose cartridges for ease of use.
In addition, it is an excellent method for sterilizing sensitive materials such as biological materials and fibre optics. It is also a good choice for sterilizing some plastics because it can be used on the surface of these products and does not damage them.
Some sterilants are corrosive, so it is essential that the sterilizer be positioned away from any areas where there might be water or soil that could potentially stain the steriliser. In addition, the sterilizer should not be placed too close to any source of fumes, such as a gas cylinder or air compressor.
The FDA is actively working with sterilization experts, medical device manufacturers and other government agencies to advance innovative ways to sterilize devices with lower levels of currently used agents or employ new agents or alternatives, while maintaining device safety and effectiveness.