Effects of Non-Condensable Gases (NCGs) on Steam Sterilisation Processes

Read the full textEffects of Non Condensable Gases on Sterilization

Summary:

A gravity displacement (class N) steam sterilization process can not reliably remove gases from hollow or porous items, resulting in areas that do not get sterilized, and the failure of the load. They should not be used for body jewelry, needles, tattoo tubes or textiles.

REVIEW

395 CENTRAL SERVICE Volume 13 2005

ZENTRAL STERILISATION

Effects of Non-Condensable Gases (NCGs) on Steam Sterilisation Processes

U. Kaiser

Keywords

  • steam sterilisation process
  • non-condensable gases (NCGs)
  • process challenge device (PCD)

Introduction

The dangers posed by non-condensable gases (NCGs) in steam sterilisation processes have long been underestimated. Biological indicators, or the best chemical indicators on the market, do not signal the presence of a NCG content of up to 10% in a sterilisation process so long as there is mixing of steam and NCGs in the sterilisation chamber.

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Disposable wrap

Can unused wrapped items be re-sterilized reusing the original wraps?

When unused sterile instrument sets are returned from the OR or patient floors our policy is to re-sterilize the sets. Since these were unopened we inspect the wrap to be sure there are no holes, replace the tapes and labeling and re-sterilize the item.

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Returning jewelry(explants) to clients

Do not buy or sell used body jewelry brnskll dot com

An interesting observation on safety issues raised in returning contaminated items such as jewelry to clients, as voiced by this medical professional’s concerns for their patients. It is evident that infection control measures should be carefully considered when previously worn jewelry or other contaminated personal items are to be returned to a customer.

Please regard the discussion in the comments below


Question

I am an OR nurse and recently started a new job in a prestigious orthopedic hospital. At the request of a surgeon or patient when implants are removed we have been cleaning and flashing them  and returning them to the patient in a plastic bag.

[NOTEFlashing is an outdated term for sterilizing items unwrapped for immediate use]

https://brnskll.com/shares/flash-faq/

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Sharpies for labeling

Can we label sterilization packages with a Sharpie brand marker?

Question

Our staff used to label all of our cardiovascular sets and supplies with a red Sharpie brand permanent marker and we would use a black Sharpie for all other items. This provided a quick and easy method to visually identify these special critical items. The labeling was restricted to the autoclave tape on the outside of wrapped packages and the film side of peel pouches.

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