If your reprocessing equipment is not properly sterilizing your devices and tools, you could be putting your patients and staff at risk for healthcare-associated infections (HAIs), which is why you need to regularly monitor your autoclave.
While sterilizers can and do mechanically fail, operator error is the leading cause of sterilizer failure, including:
Mechanical monitoring means determining and documenting whether exposure time, pressure, and temperature have reached the levels recommended by the sterilizer manufacturer. This is accomplished by reviewing gauges, displays, and printouts during a sterilization cycle, and could reveal the first signs of an issue.
It's also important to not only make sure all autoclave procedures are being followed, but also to be aware of other signs of mechanical failure, including:
And remember that even if mechanical monitoring turns up no problems, that doesn't mean your sterilizer is working properly. You need to perform chemical and biological monitoring as well. Click one of the boxes at the bottom of the page to learn more about those monitoring processes.
Learn more about Chemical Monitoring
Learn more about Biological Monitoring
Learn more about sterilizers from Ritter by Midmark
Learn more about sterilizers from Tuttnauer
Repair your current sterilizer with Henry Schein's affordable ProRepair services.
Click here for more info
Return to our main sterilization page to learn about monitoring best practices.