The efficacy of low temperature plasma (LTP) sterilization, a new sterilization technique

Höller, C.; Martiny, H.; Christiansen, B.; Rüden, H.; Gundermann, K.O.

Zentralblatt für Hygiene und Umweltmedizin 194(4): 380-391


ISSN/ISBN: 0934-8859
PMID: 8397686
Accession: 009574123

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The efficacy of low temperature plasma (LTP) sterilization, a newly developed sterilization procedure was tested. Following experiments were carried out: Determination of the most resistant test organism, influence of 10% and 20% defibrinated sheep blood or varying salt concentrations on the efficacy of the sterilization process, influence of the carrier position in the sterilization chamber and in the sterilization pouches, influence of a loaded sterilization chamber, comparative efficacy of EO and LTP, steel carriers with a blood burden of 0%, 5% and 10%, comparative efficacy of EO and LTP strip carriers in endoscopes, blood burden 0% and 10%, with and without adaptors, evaluation of two bioindicator models. B. pumilus was the test spore that overall seemed to be most resistant to the sterilization procedure. Supplementation of the test suspension with blood or saline crystals resulted in significantly reduced efficacy and has to be avoided in practical operation. The fully loaded sterilization chamber or the position of germ carriers on the shelves had no negative influence on the effectivity of the sterilization process. There were no significant differences between EO and LTP, the blood burden not exceeding 5%. 10% blood burden resulted in a significantly weaker action of LTP. For sterilization of long lumens adaptors containing hydrogen peroxide are necessary. An appropriate bioindicator tube model is introduced.