Endoscope Leak Testing
Flexible Endoscope Leak Testers
Leak testing is the most efficient and least expensive method available to detect any dangerous opening inside the flexible endoscope that could lead to fluid invasion and extraordinarily expensive repairs.
Endoscopes are complex devices that mix sophisticated electronics, mechanical components, fiber-optic illumination, micro-optical lenses and video elements together in one piece of equipment. None of these components react well to fluids.
As a result, endoscope leak testing is a crucial part of proper endoscope cleaning and disinfection, but, oftentimes, it is done improperly or not done at all. There are both manual and automated leak testers available. Regardless of the type you use, it must be done.
One of the most significant changes made to flexible endoscopes was the introduction of completely immersible scopes in the mid 1980s. These instruments can be completely soaked in disinfecting solutions long enough to be classified as “high level disinfected”. These water resistant scopes can also be pressure tested for leaks, because they are airtight and because the main components of the endoscope are hollow inside to allow room for the delicate internal components to move. This hollowness, however, also means that fluid entering one area will travel throughout the entire scope. Fluid entering the control body, for instance, may result in damage to many other parts of the scope.
Fluid invasion can occur any time that a flexible endoscope is immersed in liquid.
The following are common points of fluid invasion for the water resistant flexible scope: Bending Section and Sheath; Insertion and Universal Tubes; Control Body; Electronic Connector and Soaking Cap.
Any fluid entering the internal cavities of an endoscope may do severe or even irreparable damage to its components. Time and the corrosive nature of the fluid will determine the rate at which the damage progresses. Highly acidic or highly alkaline solutions will corrode more quickly than water, but any fluid will do serious damage.
Endoscope manufacturers have provided a means for inspecting scopes for leaks. A leak test can be performed in 15 to 30 seconds using a hand held bulb and gauge leak testing device. Since a leak may occur at almost any point in the daily life cycle of the endoscope, this pro-active approach to leak testing should be performed after every procedure and prior to immersing the endoscope in fluid, thereby preventing expensive fluid invasion repairs. More importantly, it insures the integrity of the scope, thereby eliminating potential adverse patient outcomes such as cross contamination of chemicals or proteinaecous materials from antecedent procedures.
HMB LEAK TESTERS
For Olympus, Pentax & Fujinon flexible endoscopes
THE LEAST EXPENSIVE “SCOPE INSURANCE” YOU WILL EVER BUY
LEAK TEST YOUR SCOPE IN A WET OR DRY ENVIORNMENT IN 15 SECONDS