May 09, 2018
1 min read

ASGE issues new guidelines for infection control in GI endoscopy

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Glenn Eisen
Glenn Eisen

To help minimize the risk of endoscopy-related infection transmission, the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy issued new guidelines for infection control during endoscopic procedures.

In the guideline — published in Gastrointestinal Endoscopy — Glenn Eisen, MD, MPH, chair of the ASGE Quality Assurance in Endoscopy Committee, and colleagues wrote infections caused by GI endoscopes remain somewhat rare, but they can be attributed to lapses in reprocessing protocols or defective equipment when they do occur.

“Several recent reports of infections with multi-drug resistant organisms associated with duodenoscope use suggest that prior assumptions regarding endoscopy-related infection rates may be an underestimate, particularly for [endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography],” the guideline authors wrote. “These outbreaks of infection have led to a reassessment of current infection control practices.”

The following is a summary of the ASGE Quality Assurance in Endoscopy Committee’s recommendations:

  • Follow all federal and professional organization requirements that require high-level disinfection of endoscopes.
  • Ensure proper disinfection of duodenoscope elevator mechanism and wire channel to prevent the spread of highly resistant organisms.
  • All staff involved in endoscope reprocessing need extensive training on infection control, and documentation is required for the training.
  • Staff should be assessed at least annually for reprocessing efficacy.
  • If there is a reprocessing failure, the patients, infection control personnel and the device manufacturer, as well as any relevant local, state and federal health agencies should be notified immediately.
  • General infection control principles should be adopted by the endoscopy unit.
  • Endoscopy units must have a qualified person to direct their infection prevention plans.

These updated recommendations were based on a critical review of the most current data and expert consensus on infection control during GI endoscopic procedures, the committee noted. – by Alex Young

Disclosures: The authors report no relevant financial disclosures.