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- Author or Editor: B Terleckyj x
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Commercial disinfectants classified as fungicides may not be effective against commonly encountered fungi within reasonable periods. Cell suspensions of clinical fungal isolates were exposed to use-dilutions of various disinfectants. Quaternary ammonium compounds, iodophors, and phenolics were not fungicidal against all test fungi within 60 min of exposure. Trichophyton mentagrophytes, Epidermophyton floccosum, and Aspergillus fumigatus were among the more resistant fungi. Disinfectants that possess low-level activity should not be used for disinfection of medical instruments that come in contact with the patient. The only reliable and safe measure is to use high-level disinfectants such as the glutaraldehydes, which are fungicidal in 15 to 30 min.
The authors address current issues regarding use of antiseptics and disinfectants with particular emphasis on the problems associated with claims made by manufacturers of various chemical agents. Other issues include the efficacy and limitations of commercial products, selecting the most appropriate formulation for proper disinfection, especially with instruments that come in contact with the patient, and preventing or minimizing iatrogenic infections in clinical practices. The authors stress that low-level and some intermediate-level disinfectants are unreliable because of their narrow safety margin and that chemical agents with a high level of activity should be used by all practitioners because of multi-drug resistant microorganisms and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS).