A Tucson, AZ, health clinic has offered to screen dental patients after a sterilization error with several pieces of dental instruments.
The equipment was used at the El Rio Community Health Center from March 23-25, according to a TucsonNewsNow.com story based on an El Rio press release.
"Patient safety during any oral healthcare procedure is of the utmost importance to us. During our quality checking process we discovered that a limited number of dental instruments did not complete the last sequence of a three-part cleaning and sterilization process," Dr. Spegman stated in the release.
According to the clinic, the risk of contamination is low but patients who were seen at the Congress Street location were contacted and offered screening, testing, and clinical counseling.
The cleaning of dental instruments is a multistage process that includes both manual and machine cleaning and also incorporates antibacterial solutions and hot water. The final step is placing the instruments in a sealed packets to be steam/heat sterilized in an autoclave. The autoclave process did not take place for 10 pieces of dental equipment, only six of which were used, according to the story.