Analysis of microbial load on surgical instruments after clinical use and following manual and automated cleaning

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Abstract

Background:

We aimed to monitor the microbial load and identify the microorganisms recovered from surgical instruments after clinical use and following manual and automated cleaning.

Methods:

This experimental study was carried out in the Laboratory of Oral Microbiology and Anaerobes at the Federal University of Minas Gerais in Brazil. Microbial samples were taken from 125 surgical instruments used in 25 types of gastrointestinal surgeries.

Results:

The average microbial load was 93.1 CFU/100 mL after clinical use and 41 CFU/100 mL and 8.24 CFU/100 mL on instruments following 2 sequential steps of manual cleaning, respectively, and 75 CFU/100 mL and 16.1 CFU/100 mL on instruments after automated cleaning. Surgical wound classification significantly affected the microbial load recovered on instruments. Coagulase-negative Staphylococcus, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas spp, Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, and Acinetobacter baumannii complex were recovered.

Conclusions:

The average microbial load observed after the cleaning steps decreased, and the decrease in microbial load was more pronounced using the manual method compared with that observed using the automated method.

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