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16.03.2016 | Ausgabe 11/2016

Surgical Endoscopy 11/2016

Insulation failure in electrosurgery instrumentation: a prospective evaluation

Zeitschrift:
Surgical Endoscopy > Ausgabe 11/2016
Autoren:
Floriane Tixier, Mélanie Garçon, Françoise Rochefort, Stéphane Corvaisier

Abstract

Background

The use of electrosurgery has expanded to a wide variety of surgical specialities, but it has also been accompanied by its share of complications, including thermal injuries to nontargeted tissues, caused by a break or defect in the insulation of the instrument’s coat. The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence and the location of insulation failures (IFs) in electrosurgical instruments, then to assess the necessity of routine IF testing.

Methods

Electrosurgical instruments were visually inspected and checked for IF using a high-voltage detector. Two different detectors were used during two testing sessions: DTU-6 (Petel company) and DIATEG (Morgate company). Laparoscopic and non-laparoscopic instruments were determined to have IF if current crossed the instrument’s insulation, signaled by an alarm sound.

Results

A total of 489 instruments were tested. The overall prevalence of IFs was 24.1 % with only visual inspection and 37.2 % with the IF detector. Among the 489 instruments, 13.1 % were visually intact, but had an electric test failure. DTU-6 and DIATEG detectors showed comparable efficiency in detection of overall IFs and for laparoscopic and non-laparoscopic instruments. The median location of IFs was more pronounced for laparoscopic instruments (50.4 %) and the distal location for non-laparoscopic instruments (40.4 %).

Conclusion

Accidental burns are a hidden problem and can lead to patient complications. In Central Sterilization Service Department, prevention currently includes only visual control of electrosurgery instrumentation, but testing campaigns are now necessary in order to identify maximum instruments’ defects.

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