Assessing residual contamination and damage inside flexible endoscopes over time

Cori L. Ofstead, Harry P. Wetzler, John E. Eiland, Otis L. Heymann, Sarah B. Held, Michael J. Shaw

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Researchers evaluated flexible endoscope damage and contamination levels at baseline and 2 months later. Postcleaning test results exceeded benchmarks for all gastroscopes and no colonoscopes. Microbial growth was found in samples from 47% of fully reprocessed endoscopes at baseline and 60% at follow-up. Borescope examinations identified scratches, discoloration, debris, and fluid inside endoscopes. Irregularities changed over time. Study evaluations allowed damaged and contaminated endoscopes to be identified and re-reprocessed or sent for repairs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1675-1677
Number of pages3
JournalAmerican journal of infection control
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by 3M Company , Medivators Incorporated , and HealthMark Industries , which provided study materials and funding. The sponsors did not have access to data and were not involved in manuscript preparation. Research support was also provided by University of Minnesota Health and Ofstead & Associates, Inc. No monetary compensation was received by the physicians or staff at University of Minnesota or their departments for participating in the research or writing the manuscript.


  • Adenosine triphosphate
  • Colonoscope
  • Epidemiology
  • Gastroscope
  • Microbial cultures
  • Reprocessing


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