The potential for microbial contamination associated with a recently developed needleless closed luer access device (CLAD) (Q-Syte™ Becton Dickinson, Sandy, UT, USA) was evaluated in vitro. Compression seals of 50 multiply activated Q-Syte devices were inoculated with Staphylococcus epidermidis NCTC 9865 in 25% (v/v) human blood and then disinfected with 70% (v/v) isopropyl alcohol followed by flushing with 0.9% (w/v) sterile saline. Forty-eight of 50 (96%) saline flushes passed through devices that had been activated up to a maximum of 70 times remained sterile. A further 25 Q-Syte CLADs that had undergone multiple activations were challenged with prefilled 0.9% (w/v) sterile saline syringes, the external luer tips of which had been inoculated with S. epidermidis NCTC 9865 prior to accessing the devices. None of the devices that had been accessed up to 70 times allowed passage of micro-organisms, despite challenge micro-organisms being detected on both the syringe tip after activation and the compression seals before decontamination. These findings suggest that the Q-Syte CLAD may be activated up to 70 times with no increased risk of microbial contamination within the fluid pathway. The device may also offer protection from the external surface of syringe tips contaminated with micro-organisms. © 2005 Hospital Infection Society. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
- microbial contamination
- needleless connector