August 6, 2019

NYT: Experts call for single-use, sterilization or redesign of duodenoscopes, bronchoscopes

By: Judy Mathias

Editor’s Note

Contaminated duodenoscopes have transmitted drug-resistant infections to hundreds of patients, and now some experts are urging the Food & Drug Administration to force manufacturers to develop duodenoscopes that can be properly sterilized or single-use duodenoscopes or take duodenoscopes off the market, the August 6 New York Times Reports.

Similar transmissions of infections have been tied to bronchoscopes. Researchers (Ofstead et al. Chest. 2018;154(5):1024-1034. Also see September 2019 OR Manager. In press.) inspected 24 bronchoscopes at three large academic medical centers that had been cleaned and disinfected and found that all retained “residual contamination,” including mold and Escherichia coli. An accompanying editorial (Mehta et al. Chest. 2018;154(5):1001-1003. Also see September 2019 OR Manager. In press.) noted that the results were alarming and that the pulmonology community had “buried its head in the sand regarding this issue.”

Ambu, a Danish company already markets single-use bronchoscopes, and the company anticipates having a disposable duodenoscope and additional endoscopes on the market in the US by 2020.

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