Decontamination and SterilizationKnowing and applying the rules of decontamination, sterilization, disinfection and antisepsis is the basic element of studies in all branches of medicine. Sterilization is a series of processes that include the transfer of instruments from the area of use, pre-cleaning and decontamination, transportation to the preparation-maintenance area, count-maintenance, control, packaging, sterilization, storage and preservation of sterility until use. Compliance with the rules defined in each of these stages, supervision of what is done at each stage and keeping regular records are among the indispensable requirements of sterilization.
Basic concepts used in sterilization method
Sterilization: It is the process of destroying all microorganisms -including spores- on and inside any substance or object.
Decontamination: It is the process of removing organic material and pathogens from a surface or material by physical and / or chemical methods before disinfection / sterilization and making it safe.
Validation: It is the proof that the sterilization system and processes continuously meet the pre-determined conditions.
✱Chemical indicator: Paper strips or other test materials containing chemical substances that show characteristic changes (color change, etc.) depending on the critical variables in the sterilization conditions.
✱Biological indicator: It is a test material containing resistant bacterial spores used to determine that sterilization has occurred.
✱Prion: They are infectious particles in protein structure that do not contain nucleic acid, resistant to normal sterilization and disinfection methods.
✱Bactericide: It is the effect that kills bacteria.
✱Bacterial spore: It is a special structural form formed by some bacteria, resistant to physical and chemical environmental factors.
✱Biological load (bioburden): It refers to the amount of living microorganisms in a material.