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Advances in Sterilization Pouch Technology

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Sterilization pouch technology has advanced to the point where they could be called “smart” with their built-in interior and exterior indicators for determining successful completion of the sterilization process. Whether they are paper, plastic, or other synthetic materials, pouches allow the bacteria-killing chemicals, heat, steam, or vapor inside the autoclave to penetrate and sterilize the enclosed items.

In fact, pouch technology is so evolved it’s been observed that operator error may be the reason for most sterilization failures. As medical devices, pouches need to be used properly to accomplish effective infection control. Using the appropriate size is paramount to avoiding punctures and tears. Not compromising the fold line and following the imprinted validation marks on the pouches helps ensure they are closed properly.

The adhesive strip is a critical part to the pouches’ effectiveness. It cannot have any folds, puckers, or gaps in order to properly seal. During the manufacturing process, Medicom’s SafeSeal Quattro Sterilization pouch seals have been previously heat-sealed and brought back to room temperature three times so that the seal created when you close the pouch will be extra strong. After it goes through the sterilization process, it will also open more easily as a result of this preheating process. The self-seal adhesive strip eliminates needing to use tape or a heat sealer. The SafeSeal Quattro Sterilization pouch manufacturing process delivers a perfect balance of seal strength and seal integrity: the seals are not “oversealed” so that the film fractures when opened, but are also not too weak to prevent instruments from falling through the bottom.

SafeSeal Quattro Sterilization pouches are made with “TruePress Technology,” which results in a leak-resistant seal. The proprietary blue tinted film is fused to high-grade medical paper, which forms a strong bond to protect the instruments inside. SafeSeal Quattro Sterilization pouches ensure sterilization with a Class 4 internal multivariable indicator, and a Class 1 external process indicator for steam sterilization. The external and internal indicators change color when the pouch has been properly sterilized, eliminating any confusion about the success of the process. SafeSeal Quattro Sterilization pouches meet CDC guidelines and AAMI and ISO standards for effective sterilization, and respond to all variables in time, temperature, and saturated steam. Sterilization variables can be assessed and confirmed in one easy step.

SafeSeal Quattro Sterilization pouches are tested and certified by an independent laboratory. Available in 8 sizes, they can be used for sterilizing instruments, burs, diamonds, trays, and any other items that can be reused after being steam, chemical vapor, or ETO sterilized. If properly stored, the sterilization state is maintained for up to a year after processing.  

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