Clear Flush® FAQs

FAQS ABOUT THE
A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison Rongeur

What is an A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison Rongeur?

The A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison is a patented design that allows for fast, thorough cleaning and disinfection of what is considered to be the dirtiest instrument in a neurosurgery case). The unique flush port and internal channels provide a fluid pathway to flush out infectious bioburden from between the fixed shank and the moveable crossbar and also from the internal “I” beam inside the fixed shank (see “dirty” rongeur color photos). In independent laboratory testing* using an AAMI protocol for cleaning validation, 99.9998% of infectious bio-burden was removed from the A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison with a simple flush.

*Nelson Laboratories Cleaning Evaluation Report 

What are the indications for use for the A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison Rongeur?

The indications for use are the same as for any other brand of conventional Kerrison Rongeurs. What distinguishes the A.I.M. Clean Flush® Kerrison from ALL other brands of conventional Kerrisons is its’ patented flush port and internal flushing channels. This exclusive feature ensures a clean, sterile, moisture-free instrument on every reprocessing cycle to minimize the risk of a surgical infection caused by a contaminated instrument.

Can the A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison Rongeur be flushed during surgery?

Conventional Kerrisons and Kerrison instruments that have to be disassembled during reprocessing are routinely given to an OR nurse by the surgeon to be cleaned and then returned to the surgeon during a surgical case. If the OR nurse wants to include flushing the instrument as part of the cleaning process in the OR, that is fine provided that it is done in accordance with existing hospital guidelines and policies.

Could the flush port get clogged during surgery?

No. The flush port is located on top of the moveable crossbar near the proximal end of the rongeur (on top of the instrument near the handle). It is physically impossible for the flush port to get anywhere near the surgical site during a normal procedure.

Does the flush port work for flushing out bone material?

The patented flush port was designed to flush all types of bioburden (blood, body fluids, small bone chips, etc) from inside of the instrument. If a bone chip is too large, or if it has been crushed into the “I” beam rail with excessive force, flushing alone might not remove the imbedded bone material. Should this happen, use your hospital’s standard practice to remove the imbedded bone material from the instrument.

Is the A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison available in an Ejector Kerrison version?

Yes, there is a complete line of Ejector style A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrisons.

What happens if the A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison isn’t flushed prior to sterilization?

Failure to flush the A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison in accordance with the Instructions For Use (IFUs) will cause bioburden to remain trapped inside the instrument. This is exactly the same thing that happens on EVERY reprocessing cycle with conventional, one-piece Kerrisons that cannot be flushed and also with detachable Kerrisons, or Kerrison instruments that have to be disassembled during reprocessing, that are not disassembled and manually cleaned prior to sterilization.

If you fail to properly flush the A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison over a number of reprocessing cycles, the buildup of bioburden inside of the instrument will cause it to ‘bind-up’ and become difficult to use just like a conventional, one-piece Kerrison that cannot be cleaned. Even worse, by not properly flushing the A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison on every reprocessing cycle you significantly increase your patient’s risk of a surgical infection caused by the residual bioburden trapped within the instrument.

Failure to properly flush the instrument after every procedure in accordance with the IFUs eliminates the unique design features of the A.I.M Clear Flush® Kerrison that ensures a clean, sterile, moisture-free instrument on every reprocessing cycle.

If an A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison isn’t properly flushed prior to sterilization, how do I remove the residual bioburden that is trapped inside?

If an A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison isn’t properly flushed prior to sterilization, bioburden will accumulate inside the instrument (see above). Should this occur, follow your hospital’s protocol for removing bioburden from your conventional, one-piece Kerrisons.

What are the benefits of using an A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison over a conventional Kerrison?

The A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison has 4 major benefits that significantly improve the function and performance of the instrument combined with a dramatic reduction in residual bioburden.

1. A unique, patented flush port connected to internal channels within the instrument to   provide an internal pathway to flush out infectious bio-burden from between the fixed shank and the moveable crossbar and also from the internal “I” beam inside the fixed shank. Removal of infectious bio-burden prior to sterilization dramatically reduces the risk of microbial endotoxins that are heat-stable surviving the sterilization cycle, thus allowing a contaminated kerrison to be returned to surgery and causing a surgical infection.

2. Improved steam penetration through the flush port and internal channels during sterilization to ensure 100% bacteria kill inside of the instrument. In conventional kerrisons, it is difficult, if not impossible, to ensure 100% bacteria kill during sterilization.

3.Moisture-free” after reprocessing to reduce the risk of waterborne pathogens colonizing inside the instrument after the sterilization cycle. The flush port and internal channels allow residual moisture to be voided from within the instrument after every sterilization cycle, thus reducing the infection risk caused by water borne pathogens.  Eliminating moisture also removes the major source of “rust” within the instrument.

4. The flush port and internal channels provide improved lubrication of the internal surfaces of the instrument to enhance performance, reduce drag, minimize galling,  reduce maintenance and increase the instrument’s useful life.

What are the benefits of using an A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison over Kerrison instruments that have to be disassembled during reprocessing?

In addition to the 4 major benefits of the A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison (see previous question), there is one very important benefit over Kerrison instruments that have to be disassembled during reprocessing. With Kerrison instruments that have to be disassembled during reprocessing, residual moisture can remain trapped inside of the instrument after the sterilization cycle, greatly increasing the risk of an instrument contaminated with waterborne pathogens being returned to surgery. The patented flush port and channels within the A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison allows residual moisture to be voided from within the instrument after every sterilization cycle. This eliminates the risk of a surgical infection caused by waterborne pathogens and eliminates the potential for rust to form within the instrument. By eliminating rust within the instrument, you reduce maintenance costs and extend the useful life of the instrument.

What happens if I open and close the jaws while I’m flushing the A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison? 

During testing at Nelson Laboratories utilizing an AAMI protocol, 99.9998% of all residual bioburden was removed from the A.I.M. Clear Flush® Kerrison. The testing protocol called for the jaws to be in the open, relaxed position during flushing. By opening and closing the jaws during flushing, you will potentially improve upon the already excellent, documented cleaning results available to your hospital.