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Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
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Infection Control and Sterilization

Posted on 7/18/2022 by Malmquist Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
Infection Control and SterilizationIn hospitals and clinics, there are many invasive procedures per year. The procedures require medical devices that cut through patient tissue and membrane. Disinfection and sterilization become important during such procedures. We are going to discuss methods of sterilization and their importance.


Sterilization and disinfection are procedures that are taken to ensure that medical devices do not transmit pathogens and bacteria. Sterilization may be different depending on each person's procedures so health care organizations have come up with guidelines on how to do it . Sterilization is one of the ways of cleaning and eliminating micro bacteria from surgical devices. It may involve either physical or chemical procedures. Disinfection is a procedure to eliminate many pathogens except bacterial spores. There are factors that affect the disinfection and sterilization of medical equipment. The factors include types of microbial contamination, level of microbial infection, inorganic load present, and prior cleaning of equipment. Cleaning is the process of removing visible particles from objects' surfaces by use of water with detergents manually or mechanically. Cleaning thoroughly is advised before disinfection and sterilization. The remaining particles may interfere with the effectiveness of the sterilization . Decontamination removes the microorganisms that are harmful so that they can be used or discarded.

Types of Sterilization

There are some main types of sterilization. They are sterilization, heat sterilization, and ethylene oxide sterilization. Steam sterilization is characterized as being effective and fast. It is also an affordable means of sterilization. A large steam chamber that maintains temperatures at 120 degrees Celsius destroys pathogens through heat and pressure. A dry heat method is a thermal option for sterilization. The method is limited to equipment that has been damaged by moist heat or cannot be penetrated by moist heat. It's an environmentally friendly method that has low operating costs. It only requires electricity to operate. Dry heat is very time-consuming due to heating air. Ethylene oxide sterilization is a gas-based sterilization method that prevents the division of microorganisms and kills them. The process requires a dry heat oven for operation. It is very efficient as it can be used on packaged products.
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