EYE KNIVES, keratomes, and trephine blades are examples of sharp instruments which cannot be autoclaved without corrosion of their tempered blades. In order that these instruments may not form a weak link in the chain of asepsis, they must be sterilized by a method of known effectiveness against vegetative and sporeforming bacteria. Moreover, recent evidence has extended the scope of necessary precautions to include viral as well as bacterial organisms. Transmission of infection by needles, stylets, and other instruments has been definitely established in the epidemiology of homologous serum jaundice1 and has been cited as a distinct possibility in the spread of poliomyelitis.2 It is not inconceivable that other, and more obscure, infections may be propagated in this manner. Some of these viruses are known to resist the usual means of chemical inactivation,1 and others can be expected to do so.
Notwithstanding these considerations, present practice in
ALLEN HF, MANGIARACINE AB. STERILIZATION OF SHARP INSTRUMENTS FOR USE IN EYE SURGERY. AMA Arch Ophthalmol. 1954;51(3):311-314. doi:10.1001/archopht.1954.00920040315004