Inspecting Surgical Instruments
A comprehensive textbook
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Enemies of Surgical Instrument Staining

Water and moisture of any kind (especially blood, pus, surgical debris and chlorhexidine solutions) are the primary causes of instrument staining and pitting of surgical instruments. Allowing any type of moisture to air-dry on your surgical instruments will cause severe damage. Other enemies include cold soaking or washing instruments with inappropriate solutions such as dish or laundry soap, bleach, iodine-type solutions, general disinfectants, surgeon's hand scrub and most importantly, any solution that contains chlorhexidine or is a chloride-based solution. Surgical instruments are made from 300 and 400 series stainless steel. Despite its name, stainless steel definitely stains and it can also rust and become pitted.

 

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