In December 2021, the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) released its updated ANSI/AAMI ST91:2021, “Comprehensive guide to flexible and semi-rigid endoscope processing in health care facilities.” Designed to provide guidance to staff across each stage of the flexible endoscope disinfection process, the new guidelines reflect current research and advancements with regards to scope processing. Notable updates to the standard include new classification for high-risk scopes, updated instruction for drying, storing, and handling scopes, and guidance for determining the proper length of storage (or “hang time”) before reprocessing is needed.
42 million. That’s the current number of Americans infected with human papillomavirus (or as it’s commonly referred to, “HPV”). Spread through close skin-to-skin contact, HPV is among the most common sexually transmitted infections, with upwards of 80% of sexually active men and women likely to be infected with the virus at some point during their lives. 1 2
Ultrasound imaging is a tool that is frequently performed by sonographers, doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals. With increasingly higher numbers of clinicians using ultrasound, it’s more important than ever to ensure that everyone on your team knows how to properly care for their transducers.
High-level disinfection is defined as the chemical method of killing all microorganisms in or on a medical instrument, except for a small number of bacterial spores. 1 Typically utilized after a sem-critical medical device (i.e. any device that contacts intact mucous membranes or non-intact skin, such as an ultrasound probe) is handled during a medical procedure, high-level disinfection is used as a means of sanitizing the device of any and all potential contamination, and is considered to be a crucial step in most probe disinfection processes. 2
Maintaining infection prevention & control (IPC) protocol for your ultrasound probes that ensures the integrity of your transducers and the safety of your patients is important to work. It also, unfortunately, can be trickier than it looks.
Since 1984, ultrasound has been regularly utilized in a wide variety of vascular access procedures, ranging from ultrasound-guided central venous catheterization to femoral artery cannulation to arterial access. 1 2 Ultrasound’s superior procedural advantages – combined with its cumulative benefits in terms of safety and success– make it a popular tool for practitioners conducting vascular access procedures. 2
Cleaning is a mandatory first step in the high-level disinfection process of intracavity ultrasound transducers, such as transesophageal and endocavity probes. Healthcare workers may use ‘pre-cleaning’ and ‘cleaning’ interchangeably.
Properly cleaning the probe optimizes the disinfection process and the American Institute for Ultrasound in Medicine (AIUM) states that “adequate transducer preparation is mandatory.”1 If you skip the cleaning step or perform it inadequately, you will compromise the entire disinfection or sterilization process.