Principles of Steam Sterilization and Common Mistakes

Users of steam sterilizers often make mistakes that can lead to non-sterile load items, poor performance of the equipment, lower productivity, higher operation and maintenance costs, and damage to load items. Steam sterilization has been used for more than a century to decontaminate items that can withstand moisture and high temperature. Steam is water in the vapor state; it is therefore non toxic, generally readily available, and relatively easy to control. A good understanding of basic steam sterilization principles and cycles is necessary to avoid mistakes that can lead to non-sterile load items, poor performance of the equipment, lower productivity, higher operation and maintenance costs, and damage to load items. This presentation will cover basic steam sterilization principles and most common cycles, as well as typical methods for measuring performance. Common mistakes and their impact on the operation will be discussed. Finally, the presenter will offer some tips on how to prevent these mistakes from occurring. Understand basic steam sterilization principles and the parameters that can affect the performance of steam sterilizers and learn how to optimize steam sterilization cycles based on specific applications.