Integra Logo: Medical Device Company

Instrument Care and Staining Information

Review this list, and if your question is not answered here, email your questions to us at customerservice.miltex@integralife.com

For a quick response, be sure to include your name and telephone number in your email.

Literature
Care and Cleaning Products Brochure

Frequently Asked Questions
How should I care for my instruments?
What causes stains on my instruments?
What is staining?
Additional staining information.
Does Miltex have a stain remover?


How should I care for my instruments?
Miltex is pleased to introduce our expanded offering of instrument care and cleaning products now available in a new range of sizes and packaging options, including single dose packets for ease of use, space saving 8 oz. bottles, and 1-gallon bulk containers with pump dispensers. The Miltex care and cleaning product portfolio is designed to provide optimum cleaning performance and will help to prolong the service life of valuable surgical and dental instrumentation.

What causes stains on my instruments?
Click here to download staining information or review the following on stain colors and their probable causes.

What is staining?
Staining is a surface deposit on instruments, and most often mistaken for rust. After autoclaving, you may notice a stain on your instruments. Rusting instruments are very rare. Stains on instruments appear in many colors and, in most cases, the colors tell you about the origin of the stain.

Orange/brown stain
The problem is most often a phosphate layer (brown to light orange) on the instrument, which develops as a result of any of the following causes: water sources, detergents used to wash and clean instruments, surgical wrappings, cold sterilization solutions, or dried blood.

Black stain
The most common black stains are due to an acid reaction. Black stains may result from detergents used to clean the instrument; similar to brown stains caused by high pH in detergents. The black acid type stain can be caused by low pH (less than six) during autoclaving.

Dark brown stain
Dark brown stains are usually a result of dried blood left on an instrument. Blood should be removed from the surface of the instrument immediately. It will break down the instruments surface with a chemical reaction.

Bluish/black stain
These are usually a result of plating and are extremely difficult to remove from the surface. The surface beneath the stain is always smooth, but the instrument may have to be refinished by Miltex to obtain good results. The cause for this stain is the mixing of dissimilar metals in ultrasonic cleaners and during autoclaving. Multi-color stains are most often due to excessive heat (chromium oxide stains), and actually show rainbow colors with a blue or brown overtone. When the instrument shows these heat stains, it may have lost part of its original hardness, and may not perform well. These instruments can usually be refinished, and the hardness tested. The staining can be polished off.

Additional Staining Information
As described, stains are either deposited onto instrument's surface, plated on, or in the case of rusting, developed from the instrument itself. The most common discoloration is due to deposit stains and usually occur during autoclaving.

To minimize staining, it is important that the autoclave runs perfectly, and that it has a well-functioning drying cycle. The instruments should come out completely dry, whether in wrappers or loose on a tray. If any moisture is left in the pack, or on the instruments, it will result in tiny water droplets on the instrument surface, which will leave a circular stain after drying. The color of this stain will depend on the pH, as well as the mineral or metal contents of the water. If the drying cycle works perfectly, however, there is a much less chance for deposits to form on the surface of the instrument.

Stains due to metal deposits or plating stains are always near the most magnetic parts of the instrument. New instruments are often highly magnetic in the locks, the serrations and ratchets. This happens because the carbon steel tools used to work on the instruments during production are very magnetic themselves. This magnetism wears off gradually during handling and sterilization. This is the reason why newer instruments tend to stain more visibly.

Does Miltex have a stain remover?
Yes, our stain remover is supplied as a 3oz. powdered formula made specifically for use on stainless steel, chrome, nickel, brass, copper and silver. Apply remover with damp cloth or sponge and polish gently, then rinse instruments thoroughly with lukewarm water. The Miltex Stain Remover will not harm instrument surfaces.

The surgical instrument stain remover removes stains and tarnish, restores luster to surgical and dental instruments, autoclaves, ultrasonic cleaners, stainless steel countertops, trays and stands

3-1001 3-700 MILTEX Spray Lube, 8 oz. (0.24 liter) bottles (case of 12). Pre-mixed, non-silicone, anti-corrosive formula in a ready to use 8 oz. spray pump bottle. Steam permeable and water soluble. Helps prevent spotting, staining and rusting. Lubricates instrument box locks, screw locks, scissors blades, and any other metal to metal moving parts.
3-1001 3-720 MILTEX Surgical Instrument Cleaner, 8 oz. (0.24 liter) bottles (case of 12). Contents of one 8 oz. bottle makes 32 gallons of solution. Neutral pH and phosphate-free liquid concentrate formula for manual and ultrasonic cleaning or soaking of surgical/dental instruments, accessories and glassware. Biodegradable and rinses free.
3-1001 3-725 MILTEX Surgical Instrument Cleaner, 1 gallon pump (3.78 liter) bottles (case of 4). Contents of 1-gallon container makes 512 gallons of solution. Neutral pH and phosphate-free liquid concentrate formula for manual and ultrasonic cleaning or soaking of surgical/dental instruments, accessories and glassware. Biodegradable and rinses free.
3-1001 3-740 MILTEX Surgical Instrument Stain Remover, 3 oz. (85 grams) plastic jars (case of 12). Special powdered formula which removes stains and tarnish and restores luster to surgical/dental instruments, autoclaves, ultrasonic cleaners, stainless steel countertops, etc. Ideal for use on stainless steel, chrome, nickel, brass, copper and silver
3-1001 3-750 MILTEX EZ-Zyme All Purpose Enzyme Cleaner, 3/4 oz. (22 ml) packets (dispenser box of 32). Contents of 1-box makes 32 gallons of solution. Neutral pH multi-enzyme liquid concentrate ideal for instrument presoak, ultrasonic cleaning, laundry presoak, and evacuation system cleaner. Ideal for cleaning hard to remove proteinaceous (mucous & tissue) and lipid (fatty) materials from the surfaces of surgical/dental instruments, linen, water submersible equipment, or where mechanical scrubbing is impractical.
3-1001 3-755 MILTEX EZ-Zyme All Purpose Enzyme Cleaner, 1 gallon pump (3.78 liter) bottles (case of 4). Contents of 1-gallon container makes 170 gallons of solution. Neutral pH multi-enzyme liquid concentrate ideal for instrument presoak, ultrasonic cleaning, laundry presoak, and evacuation system cleaner. Ideal for cleaning hard to remove proteinaceous (mucous & tissue) and lipid (fatty) materials from the surfaces of surgical/dental instruments, linen, water submersible equipment, or where mechanical scrubbing is impractical.
3-1001

3-760

MILTEX Instrument Prep Enzyme Foam, 24 oz. (0.71 liter) spray bottles (case of 12). Ready to use foaming spray for pre-cleaning of soiled instruments and scopes (rigid & flexible). Ideal for applications where instrument cleaning is not immediately available. Simply spray on instruments until ready for cleaning. Prevents bio burden from drying onto instruments prior to initializing decontamination. Active enzymes work to breakdown blood, mucous and other bio burden for reduced cleaning time. No water dilution required and prevents spills and splashing during transport. Easy and safe to use on metals, plastic and rubber materials.
3-1001 3-800 MILTEX Instrument Care System Kit includes one each of the following: Spray Lube (REF 3-700), Surgical Instrument Cleaner (REF 3-720), Surgical Instrument Stain Remover (REF 3-740), Instrument Care DVD (REF 3-810), Nylon Brush and Stainless Steel Brush (REF 3-1000 & 3-1001)
3-1001 3-810 MILTEX Instrument Care DVD, 25-minute Instructional DVD designed to help practitioners and staff properly care for instruments. DVD offers step-by-step guidance on handling, cleaning, rinsing, inspecting, lubricating and sterilizing all surgical and dental instruments.
3-1001 3-1000 MILTEX Instrument Cleaning Brushes 7-1/4" (18.4cm), Nylon Bristles (Set of 3). Ideal for cleaning hard to reach places without scratching or harming delicate instrument surfaces.
3-1001 3-1001 MILTEX Instrument Cleaning Brushes 7-1/4" (18.4cm), Stainless Steel Bristles (Set of 3). Ideal for cleaning rasps, files and burs.