TV Ultrasound Disinfectant Study

A recent study of transvaginal ultrasounds used in a hospital Emergency Department has illustrated the dangers of inadequate cleaning, and potential contamination by the human papillomavirus (HPV). This two part study contained both ‘surveillance’ and ‘in use’ components to determine whether barrier protection (i.e. a condom) and their current disinfection practices were able to prevent HPV contamination.

  • During surveillance, the ultrasound was swabbed at the same time twice a day when not in use. As a result, “a total of 120 surveilance samples were collected over 60 days, of which nine (7.5%) were HPV DNA positive”, illustrating the inefficacy of their current regime.
  • During the in use portion of the study, patients were swabbed to confirm presence of a pre-existing HPV infection. Post analysis, “three out of 14…samples…taken after disinfection were HPV DNA positive”, again highlighting the inadequacies of their current practices.

Should you wish to obtain a copy of the study, or to discuss at any time, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Quotations courtesy of:
Shuk Ting Christine Ma, A C Yeung, Paul Kay Sheung Chan, et al. (July 2012). Transvaginal ultrasound probe contamination by the human papillomavirus in the emergency department. Emergency Medicine Journal (online).