The great precleaning challenge

Precleaner applied to stainless steel test coupon with pipette

Side-by-side testing demonstrates stunning results

Curious 275x197At Case Medical, we're curious people. From our scientists steeped in data and experimental design to our clinical specialists who've seen the challenges of a busy sterile processing department from the inside, we want to understand exactly how things work.

When anecdotal accounts of difficult to remove precleaning gel residue on instruments and containers started popping up, our interest was piqued. Our first question—how would our PentaPrep® Multi-Enzymatic Solution compare to “The Gel” against the challenge of dried on soil?

Scenario 1: PentaPrep vs The Gel 5 minutes

We know that PentaPrep solution is a powerful pretreatment product, with five distinct varieties of enzymes—protease, lipase, amylase, and several cellulases including endo and exogluconases in solution with nonionic surfactants. What does that really mean? It means that the enzymatic cleaning power of PentaPrep breaks down proteins, fats, carbohydrates, and bioburden, so soil doesn’t stand a chance.

We created a challenge by depositing three drops each of PentaPrep solution and "The Gel" to the center of a stainless steel Case Soil® Test Coupon. The test soil is a controlled dose of representative soil types commonly found on surgical instruments. Both solutions were allowed to sit for five minutes, then rinsed for 15 seconds and dried with compressed air.

Scenario 1 Test Video
See the results.

Scenario 2: CasePrep vs The Gel 5 minutes

Next, we tested the CasePrep® solution, made of similar high-quality ingredients as the PentaPrep solution, but without the enzymes. Would a non-enzymatic cleaner show the same results?

Scenario 2 Test Video
See the results.

Scenario 3: CasePrep vs The Gel 72 hours

In previous independent testing, our multi-enzymatic formula was highly effective at 72 hours and showed no signs of microbial growth. Building on those great results, we decided to design a more extreme test.

Using a worst case scenario of instruments left over a long weekend, we applied the CasePrep pretreatment and "The Gel" and let them sit for 72 hours. Of course, best practices call for soiled surgical instruments to be transported immediately to the decontamination area for processing to prevent contaminants from drying on the surfaces. This experiment was intended to test an outlier scenario.

Scenario 3 Test VideoSee the results.

In this case, you can see still residue on the stainless steel coupon treated with "The Gel," even after rinsing. With just seconds under running water, the coupon treated with Case Prep was completely clear.

For additional confirmation, we used a color-change protein indicator (Bradford's reagent) to test both coupons and enhance visibility of any residual protein. The brown color on the CasePrep-treated coupon is the natural color of the reagent and indicates no protein. The bright blue color on "The Gel"-treated coupon indicates the presence of residual protein.


The takeaway

We found these results to be quite revealing and to demonstrate that you cannot assume that all instrument cleaning products perform the same. Don’t take our word for it; we encourage you to try it yourself!