Can you place something unsterile on top of sterile if wrapped?

  1. 0
    I was told today by AORN standards that you should not place something such as a book on top of sterile wrapped items. Anyone know for sure and can find the guidelines for me?

    Get the hottest topics every week!

    Subscribe to our free Nursing Insights newsletter.

  2. 8 Comments...

  3. 0
    I just went through ARON 101 and that was covered. I do not know why? Prephaps incase there is a micro puncture in the sealed bag litlle germs could get through?
  4. 0
    IMO: As long as you protect the integrity of the sterile item you may place an item on top of a securely wrapped package. It is not the best practice but can be done. You would not place something that would have the possibility of leaking onto or puncturing the sterile pack. You would not "store" non-sterile items "on top" of sterile supplies. Hope that answers your question.
  5. 0
    The information you are looking for is published by the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI). The AAMI produces recommended practices for sterilization and storage and are the accepted authority on how to process, sterilize and store supplies. You can probably find the book(s) in processing or whoever manages it at your facility should have a copy.
  6. 1
    I contacted AAMI and they said they were unable to answer my question but wanted to sell me a $200 book with the answer. I guess I'll keep looking.
    Jessy_RN likes this.
  7. 1
    Quote from hotdog19d
    I contacted AAMI and they said they were unable to answer my question but wanted to sell me a $200 book with the answer. I guess I'll keep looking.
    Now thats funny:chuckle:chuckle:chuckle
    Jessy_RN likes this.
  8. 0
    Your facility should have a copy.
  9. 0
    It is extremely POOR practice to place a non-sterile item on top of (or underneath) a sterile item. In fact, really, they should even be on a different shelf, or at least next to each other and not touching. Sterile items should be stored in a clinically controlled environment and should not be stored in the same areas a non-sterile items.

    You really want to get technical? Sterile "have available" items should not be in the OR with the patient, but should be right outside the room in the restricted area.

    Why? The pressure from items on top of each other are considered an "incident" and can cause a pressure exchange of air from outside of the sterile package to inside of the sterile package.
  10. 0
    Quote from CIRQL8

    Why? The pressure from items on top of each other are considered an "incident" and can cause a pressure exchange of air from outside of the sterile package to inside of the sterile package.

    Can you explain this in a little more detail?. If it can happen with stacking you would think even handling the items could cause this.


Nursing Jobs in every specialty and state. Visit today and Create Job Alerts, Manage Your Resume, and Apply for Jobs.

A Big Thank You To Our Sponsors
Top