Caring for TEE Probes the Right Way

Caring for TEE Probes the Right Way

According to the American Heart Association, transesophageal echocardiogram (TEE) ultrasound probes use high-frequency sound waves to make detailed pictures of the heart and the arteries that lead to and from it. These devices are responsible for helping thousands of people with various heart-related issues learn more about what's going on in their hearts. Since these probes play such a vital role in the health of so many, it's important to care for them properly to prevent any damage which could result in poor image quality, expensive repairs, or even the spreading of an HAI.

Reduce Handling

The best way to minimize the risk of damaging TEE probes is by reducing handling of the fragile device via the implementation of automation in your reprocessing procedure. Utilizing a device like the TEEClean® Automated TEE Probe Cleaner Disinfector automates the cleaning, disinfection, and rinsing steps. This means the probe will be handled less often, helping prevent it from being bumped or scraped accidentally as can happen when manually reprocessing.

Automation helps in other ways, as well. By automating disinfection, you can rest assured that the probe will not be exposed to harsh disinfectants a moment longer than necessary which will help extend the insertion tube's lifespan. The probe's handle is also safeguarded against accidentally falling into a basin of disinfectant which would permanently damage the TEE probe.

Transport Safely

Another way to protect costly TEE probes from damage is to use a transportation solution that will keep the probe safe from harm. The Joint Commission requires that probes be transported in leak-proof, puncture resistant containers. The TPorter® TEE Ultrasound Probe Procedure Case is the perfect way to transport TEE probes to and from the procedure room. The tough polycarbonate case protects TEE probes from damage during transport and even protects patients and staff from exposure to potentially hazardous biological material.

Additionally, the molded compartments help transport the required compliance products for the TEE procedure and ID status labels which identify the probe as dirty or clean. This also helps comply with Joint Commission standards which require that dirty and clean probes be clearly labeled, which is also best practice.

Secure Storage

Finally, at the end of a hard day of work, every TEE probe needs a safe place to rest. The Joint Commission suggests that probes be stored, "vertically in a clean, well-ventilated and dust-free area." The best solution is a TEE probe storage cabinet. The CleanShield® TEE Probe Storage Cabinet prevents probe contamination after high-level disinfection, but is also useful for probe protection. Obviously, the cabinet prevents accidental bumps from passersby, but it also does more. The CleanShield keeps cables straight, not coiled, which is important for the cable's integrity and, thus, image quality.

TEE ultrasound probes are an important part of healthcare and heart health, and keeping them functioning optimally is vital to the health of patients and the financial health of healthcare facilities. Implementing just a few of these suggestions can help to lengthen your TEE probe's lifespan and keep it running smoothly for years.

About CS Medical

CS Medical LLC has pioneered the automated disinfection process for Transesophageal ultrasound probes with the development and release of the TD 100® Automated TEE Probe Disinfector. In 2005, the TD 100 was the first FDA cleared automated disinfection process with printed verification for Transesophageal ultrasound probes. During the disinfection process, the TEE probe receives high-level disinfection in (5) five minutes from TD-5® or TD-8® followed by (5) five complete rinse cycles before disinfection confirmation is acknowledged and a report is printed. The verification report indicates probe contact time with the high-level disinfectant as well as the average temperature of the single-use disinfectant during each cycle.

For more than 15 years and over 4 million high-level disinfections, the TD 100 Automated TEE Probe Disinfector has eliminated manual reprocessing of delicate and expensive TEE ultrasound probes while also providing a repeatable and FDA cleared disinfection process. The TEEClean® Automated TEE Probe Cleaner Disinfector will continue the TD 100's work by automating the required cleaning process for the TEE probe before high-level disinfection. TEEClean, with electronic record data logging, printed verification reporting, FDA cleared cleaning, and high-level disinfection will be the standard of care for TEE ultrasound probes.

CS Medical's TEE Complete Care® products provide quality device care and storage by minimizing healthcare operational costs, improving service readiness and increasing regulatory compliance.