Sterilizing instruments is extremely important in any medical unit, in order to protect both the patients, as well as the medical staff against any infections or transmissible diseases. Thus, we use the most rigorous standards in the field in our clinic. The sterilization procedures involve destruction processes of all types and forms of microorganisms (viruses, microbes, bacteria/bacterial endospores, etc.).
Briefly, the procedures we use within our clinic consist of:
- a preliminary stage
- sterilization as such
In the first stage, the medical instruments are carefully washed in a detergent solution, then, they are placed in the ultra-sound bath, immersed in a special disinfectant solution after which they are rinsed and dried. The instruments that have come into contact with blood are disinfected separately.
After this, the instruments are tightly packed in sealed foils with sterilization indicators that change color when the sterilization temperature reaches the recommended level. Small sized items (for example: drills) are placed in metal boxes that also have sterilization indicators stickers on them. Both on the indicators as well as on the foil, the date and time when sterilization was performed are marked.
These are also mentioned in the sterilization log, where the type of sterilization, parameters, time of sterilization and the type of indicator used are recorded.
About the sterilization equipment – autoclave
The equipment performing sterilization as such is called an autoclave. This is a completely automated device, hermetically sealed sterilizing the instrumentation with pressurized vapors at temperatures high enough to eliminate any pathogenic agent. The autoclave is checked periodically and monitored by institutions licensed for this particular purpose. These tests check if the autoclave is functioning within normal parameters. We have in
our clinic a new, highly performant model (Tuttnauer brand, Elara 11 model). The operating temperature reaches 134º C and the vapor pressure 328 kPa, the duration of a full cycle being of 50 minutes.
The built-in controller prints out a report after each sterilization, so that any errors that may affect the efficiency of the autoclave can be detected.
Concerning the occupational hygiene and prevention of transmittable diseases, we would like to point out the following issues:
- we only use disposable supplies in our clinic (sterile syringes, needles, aspirators, bibs, operating drapes, etc.);
- our staff is medically examined periodically;
- in order to increase the levels of hygiene and protection we use disposable masks, glasses and gloves;
- for patients who suffer from transmittable diseases we offer personalized procedures for each particular case;
- we use broad spectrum disinfectant solutions, respecting the time of exposure, that comply with European standards in the field (bactericides against Candida albicans, sporicides, fungicides, active virucides against HIV, B/C hepatitis, herpes virus, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, etc.);
- hand disinfection is made with special disinfectant solutions;
- infectious waste are incinerated at a hospital (by contract);
- the clinic has floors covered with a smooth and non-absorbent material that is easy to clean and disinfect.