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Currently, around 56% of medical devices are sterilized using EO. In the medical sector, EO is used in a wide range of services from wound dressings to stents and everything in between. This article discusses the reasons for using EO sterilization and the challenges it is facing.
Reasons for preferring Ethylene Oxide Sterilization Services
Ethylene Oxide Sterilization Services are widely popular for several good reasons.
1. Safe for a variety of materials
Materials plastics and polymers, not withstand other methods of germ-killing as steam treatment, high temperature of the autoclave, or radiation sterilization. Ethylene Oxide Sterilization Services are perfect for sterilizing these materials at a low temperature.
2. Overkill Process
Ethylene Oxide Sterilization Services is a contamination control process is categorized as ‘overkill’. This means there is a large safety factor built into the protocol. A radiation method for sterilization precisely calculates the bio-burden. Cio-burden overflow, the sterilization effect may not be sufficiently strong. Ethylene Oxide Sterilization Services offer a large safety buffer and eradicate all contaminants. It might take a little longer for the EO to carry out the ‘overkill’ protocol.
3. Easy Penetration
Being a very small molecule, EO can easily penetrate the surface of the object it sterilizes. Allows it to clean the surface and deeply it can enter into the walls of plastic devices.
Downsides of Ethylene Oxide Sterilization Services
EO sterilization is not a rosy rose way of cleaning medical objects. There are certain challenges attaching to it.
1. Reactive and Flammable nature
Being a gas Ethylene Oxide is an extremely flammable and reactive material. It reacts violently with exposure to copper, copper alloys, and rust.
2. Health Hazards
classified ethylene Oxide Sterilization Services, utilize EO gas which is classifying as a genotoxic, mutagenic, and carcinogenic material. The ability to bind to nucleophilic biopolymers as RNA, DNA, and proteins. This can cause serious health hazards. The symptoms of health hazards to EO exposure include eye irritation, lung damage, pulmonary edema, contact dermatitis, ataxia, headaches, and nausea. In many cases, it has lead to spontaneous miscarriages of women working in situations of chronic exposure to the chemical.
Measures to Adopt
Order to safeguard against exposure to Ethylene Oxide, appropriate personal protective equipment should be used at all times. Environmental Health and Safety Department at Georgia Institute of Technology recommends the usage of lab attire, safety glasses, lab coat, and nitrile gloves. Respiratory protection and lungs care, a military-style gas mask is using an air-purifying respirator with an organic vapor cartridge are not sufficient.
Oxide Sterilization Services are the most preferred means of eradicating germs from materials. They have certain downsides too.