Decontamination of Intravaginal Probes Infected by Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Using UV-C Decontamination System

J Clin Med. 2019 Oct 24;8(11):1776. doi: 10.3390/jcm8111776.


Background: This three-step study evaluated ultraviolet-C (UV-C) efficacy against human papillomavirus (HPV) found on vaginal ultrasound probes.

Methods: The first two steps evaluated UV-C disinfection of vaginal ultrasound probes in routine condition. During the first phase, the probe (n = 100) was sampled after a complete cleaning and disinfection protocol, i.e., cleaning with chemically impregnated wipes, followed by UV-C. During the second phase, the probe (n = 47) was sampled after cleaning and UV-C. The final step consisted of applying mixes of HPV on a dedicated, covered probe (n = 15) then sampling the cover, the probe after removal of the cover, after cleaning, and after UV-C. HPV detection was performed using CLART® HPV2 PCR (Genomica, Madrid, Spain).

Results: In the first phase, no probes were found to be positive for both DNA after UV-C. In the second phase, eight probes were found to be positive after cleaning (seven with human DNA and one with HPV) and negative after UV-C. In the final phase, one probe was found to be positive for HPV for each sample except after UV-C.

Conclusions: Covers followed by a chemically impregnated wipe are not sufficient to ensure patient safety during vaginal ultrasound examinations. UV-C is effective in routine conditions against contaminations found on vaginal ultrasound probes, especially HPV.

Keywords: HPV; disinfection; genital cancer; intravaginal ultrasound; ultraviolet disinfection.