Caring for Your Ultrasound Probes
Extending the life of your ultrasound probes can be done in a few ways. First, by following proper handling protocol and second, by using the right disinfectant. Our intention is to offer handling tips to prolong the life and image quality of your ultrasound equipment, but still refer to your infection control personnel for final approvals.
Handling Your Ultrasound Probe
- Education of non-traditional users. While sonographers are well educated to protect ultrasound equipment, the growing user base of non-traditional users can result in increased accidental damage of the equipment. In general, the probe handle and the lens area must be protected with careful handling. When it comes to equipment handling, it’s critically important to ensure that everyone handling and using ultrasound equipment is fully trained.
- There is no 5-second rule! A large percentage of ultrasound probe repair is required because probes are accidentally dropped. While there are patient throughput requirements that require imaging staff to move efficiently, everyone should be aware of equipment costs, and every effort should be given to keep probes from hitting the floor (or any other hard surfaces).
- Can I borrow your glasses? Regular visual inspection of ultrasound equipment for cuts and cracks is important. The widening use of ultrasound has increased the daily runtime of many probes, making it even more important to regularly inspect probes from tip to connector. It is important to identify damage as early as possible to better allow for probe repair, as repair can be significantly less expensive than purchasing another probe.
Choosing the Right Disinfectant for Your Ultrasound Probe
We recommend following the instructions on the manufacturer recommended agent’s packaging for cleaning or disinfection. Additionally, check with your hospital infection control personnel if you have further questions about cleaning, disinfecting times, etc. Other things to consider are ventilation and soak times.
Feel free to contact us with questions in regard to transducer care, however, we will not be able to recommend a specific product for your facility.