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Cleaning of Blood-Contaminated Reprocessed Angiographic Catheters and Spinal Needles

  • Thereza Christina Vessoni Penna (a1) and Carlos Augusto M. Ferraz (a2)

To evaluate the efficacy of a multistep cleaning method using a cleaner and a chemical disinfectant on blood-contaminated angiographic catheters and spinal needles intended to be sterilized by hydrogen peroxide gas plasma.


A mixture of radiopaque iodine contrast, bovine blood (plus ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid), and a suspension of Bacillus subtilis spores was used to simulate catheterization and needle use. The mixture was a 1:1 proportion of contrast and blood, inoculated so that there was a final concentration of B subtilis spores of 1.0×106 colony-forming units (CFU)/mL. The inoculated devices were cleaned using a hydrogen peroxide solution at a concentration of 1.5±0.5 percent by weight, followed by distilled water with enzymatic detergent. After drying, the devices were sterilized with hydrogen peroxide gas plasma.


The initial B subtilis spore concentration inoculated into catheters and needles varied from 2.12×104 to 2.74×107 CFU/mL. The residual load of B subtilis spores after cleaning varied from zero (no count) to a maximum of 200 CFU/device. The multistep cleaning procedure was responsible for an average 5-log10 reduction of B subtilis spores in the catheter and needle lumens.


The hydrogen peroxide and enzymatic detergent aqueous solutions were shown to be efficacious when used as part of a multistep cleaning method. The low level of microbial contamination prior to sterilization with hydrogen peroxide gas plasma assured that the intended sterility assurance level was reached.

Corresponding author
Rua Antonio de Macedo Soares, 452, São Paulo, SP 04607-000, Brasil
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Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology
  • ISSN: 0899-823X
  • EISSN: 1559-6834
  • URL: /core/journals/infection-control-and-hospital-epidemiology
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