Why use a liquid submersible biological indicator to test liquid loads vs. an EZTest (SCBI) or spore strip? In steam sterilization the steam typically comes into direct contact with solid items. When sterilizing liquids however this is not the same type of process. The steam from the autoclave will make contact the container but, unlike solid goods, the steam never directly contacts the item that needs to be sterile; i.e. the liquid inside.
Also one very important concept to consider is the “lag time to temperature.” The chamber reaches the exposure temperature quickly but the liquid will take some additional time. This can be unique depending on the volume that is in the vial and on the cycle parameters themselves.
The biological indicator needs to be in an appropriate location to accurately monitor what is happening to the liquid being sterilized. This is the same for any type of sterilization cycle. For liquid loads, this means we need to suspend the biological indicators into the most difficult location of the load to sterilize; the geometric center of the liquid.
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