Infection Control Matters

In the day-to-day operations of Pure Peninsula Spa, infection control matters and safeguards are practiced every day to prevent the spread of infections.

According to Luis Ostrosky, M.D., Professor of Infectious Diseases at McGovern Medical School at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth), the typical infections we would be concerned about with nail salons are the standard run-of-the-mill bacterial infections like staph or strep that occur when you have a breakdown in the skin. We are also concerned about more exotic infections like atypical micro bacterial infections–which are cousins of tuberculosis–these have been reported in nail salons and are typically difficult to diagnose. They require a very long treatment of antibiotics. We are also concerned about fungal infections.

In Dr. Neitzel’s Peninsula Podiatry practice, she sees around 100 cases per year with infections presumed to have originated in a nail salon.

For that reason, and because Dr. Neitzel regularly sees painful ingrown toenails, foot fungus, and toenail fungus that have resulted from the improper procedure and sanitizing techniques in nail salons, she decided to open Pure Peninsula Spa and offer safer spa services.

In providing these safer spa services, Dr. Neitzel ensures that Pure Peninsula Spa follows aseptic technique and all sterilization protocols

Our Process

A sterile set of instruments is provided for each client’s visit.

Pure Peninsula Spa uses an autoclave to sterilize all instruments used for a pedicure or manicure treatment. An autoclave uses high pressure and steam to kill 100 percent of all infective organisms. Autoclaves can inactivate fungi, bacteria, spores, viruses, and other microorganisms on surgical-grade instrumentation.

For items that cannot be autoclaved, such as foot or hand spa basins, we follow EPA guidelines, and disposable liners are used for each client. All other items used that cannot be autoclaved are single-use, disposable items.

Our nail technicians have received special training in aseptic technique and sterilization protocols.

At Pure Peninsula Spa, we adhere to the strictest of infection control procedures to ensure our clients experience a truly unique spa experience–a place where infection control matters

Asceptic Care FAQs

What does asepsis mean?

The term asepsis means the absence of potentially pathogenic microorganisms.

What is an aseptic technique?

Aseptic technique is a process or procedure used to achieve asepsis to prevent the transfer of potentially pathogenic microorganisms to a susceptible site that may result in the development of infection.

Aseptic technique is applied in various settings, but in particular, whenever the integrity of the skin or the mucosal barrier is interrupted.

Aseptic technique refers to anything we do that reduces the risk of introducing microorganisms to another, such as

  • Removing or killing microorganisms from hands and objects.
  • Disinfecting a patient’s skin using antiseptic wipes.
  • Sterilizing equipment and instruments before a procedure.
  • Keeping sterilized instruments inside plastic wrappers to prevent contamination.

Hand hygiene compliance, in particular, is the most important aspect in reducing cross-infection of microorganisms.

Sterilization FAQs

What does sterilization do?

Sterilization destroys all microorganisms on the surface of an article or in a fluid to prevent disease transmission associated with the use of that item.

What constitutes sterile?

According to the CDC, the concept of what constitutes sterile is measured as a probability of sterility for each item sterilized. This probability is commonly referred to as the sterility assurance level (SAL) of the product and is defined as the probability of a single viable microorganism occurring on a product after sterilization.

Medical devices that have contact with sterile body tissues or fluids are considered critical items. These items should be sterile when used because any microbial contamination could result in disease transmission. Such items include surgical instruments, biopsy forceps, and implanted medical devices. If these items are heat resistant, the recommended sterilization process is steam sterilization because it has the largest margin of safety due to its reliability, consistency, and lethality.

What is the best sterilization method?

The best sterilization methods include classical sterilization techniques using saturated steam under pressure or hot air (such as an autoclave). They are the most reliable and should be used whenever possible.

What is steam sterilization?

The basic principle of steam sterilization, as accomplished in an autoclave, is to expose each item to direct steam contact at the required temperature and pressure for the specified time. Thus, there are four steam sterilization parameters: steam, pressure, temperature, and time. The ideal steam for sterilization is dry saturated steam and entrained water (dryness fraction ≥97%). Pressure serves to obtain the high temperatures necessary to kill microorganisms quickly. Specific temperatures must be obtained to ensure the microbicidal activity. The two common steam-sterilizing temperatures are 121°C (250°F) and 132°C (270°F). These temperatures (and other high temperatures) must be maintained for a minimal time to kill microorganisms.

What is an autoclave?

An autoclave is a machine that uses steam under pressure to kill harmful bacteria, viruses, fungi, and spores on items that are placed inside a pressurized vessel. The items are heated to an appropriate temperature for a given amount of time.

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