Preventing cross-contamination during ultrasonic cleaning

During the cleaning of medical instruments such as tweezers, dental drills and tattoo needles, special attention needs to be given to prevent contamination from one instrument to end up on the next instrument. This risk on so-called cross-contamination exists especially during ultrasonic cleaning, since contamination that has been removed from an object remains inside the ultrasonic bath. One would have to empty, clean and refill the bath completely – which is often not done. This is not only relevant for blood, tissue and bacteria, but also for oil and particles in high-tech applications or DNA traces in critical laboratory tests.

The dirt from the first object ends up in the ultrasonic bath. A second object that is being cleaned has a large risk on getting contaminated with the dirt from the first object. Additionally, the cleaning may be negatively affected.

Cross-contamination can be prevented by indirect cleaning. The object that needs to be cleaned is placed not directly inside an ultrasonic bath but with the use of a container such as a glass or plastic beaker or a metal container. The contamination will not end up in the ultrasonic bath but rather in the container, which is easier to refill. But now the risk is with these containers: they need to be cleaned thoroughly, since any remaining dirt may end up on the next object.

By placing each object in a new BuBble bag, the ultrasonic bath itself will not be contaminated and the second object will be cleaned, since all contamination is being disposed off with the bag.

This is one of the most important reasons why our BuBble bags are disposable, or single-use. The contamination is thrown away together with the bag. This saves on time needed to clean a container and, more importantly, the risk on cross-contamination is zero!