Customer Service:
Mon - Fri: 8:30 am - 6 pm EST

Medical Devices Biological and Chemical Indicators

This category contains several series of standards on the sterilization of health care products. The standards included are focused on biological and chemical indicators.

 Back to Sterilization Standards Home

ISO 11138 - Sterilization of Health care Products Package

ISO 11138 - Sterilization of Health care Products Package - Parts 1 to 7 (Save up to 50% Off List Prices)

ISO 11138 - Sterilization of Health care Products Package provides methods for testing systems containing viable microorganisms providing a defined resistance to a specified sterilization process. The biological indicators sterilization processes supported in the ISO 11138 - Sterilization of Health care Products Package includes ethylene oxide, moist heat, dry heat, low-temperature steam and formaldehyde. This package includes the following standards:
ISO 11138-1:2017
ISO 11138-2:2017
ISO 11138-3:2017
ISO 11138-4:2017
ISO 11138-5:2017
ISO 11138-7:2019


ISO 11138-1:2017

Sterilization of health care products - Biological indicators - Part 1: General requirements

ISO 11119-1:2017 specifies general requirements for production, labelling, test methods and performance characteristics of biological indicators, including inoculated carriers and suspensions, and their components, to be used in the validation and routine monitoring of sterilization processes.

ISO 11119-1:2017 specifies basic and common requirements that are applicable to all parts of ISO 11138. Requirements for biological indicators for particular specified processes are provided in the relevant parts of ISO 11138. If no specific subsequent part is provided, this document applies.

NOTE National or regional regulations can apply.

ISO 11119-1:2017 does not apply to microbiological test systems for processes that rely on physical removal of microorganisms, e.g. filtration processes or processes that combine physical and/or mechanical removal with microbiological inactivation, such as use of washer disinfectors or flushing and steaming of pipelines. This document, however, can contain elements relevant to such microbiological test systems.


ISO 11138-2:2017

Sterilization of health care products - Biological indicators - Part 2: Biological indicators for ethylene oxide sterilization processes

ISO 11138-2:2017 specifies requirements for test organisms, suspensions, inoculated carriers, biological indicators and test methods intended for use in assessing the performance of sterilizers and sterilization processes employing ethylene oxide gas as the sterilizing agent, either as pure ethylene oxide gas or mixtures of this gas with diluent gases, at sterilizing temperatures within the range of 29 C to 65 C.

NOTE 1 Requirements for validation and control of ethylene oxide sterilization processes are provided by ISO 11135 and ISO 14937.

NOTE 2 National or regional regulations can provide requirements for work place safety.


ISO 11138-3:2017

Sterilization of health care products - Biological indicators - Part 3: Biological indicators for moist heat sterilization processes

ISO 11138-3:2017 specifies requirements for test organisms, suspensions, inoculated carriers, biological indicators and test methods intended for use in assessing the performance of sterilization processes employing moist heat as the sterilizing agent.

NOTE 1 Requirements for validation and control of moist heat sterilization processes are provided by the ISO 17665 series.

NOTE 2 National or regional regulations can provide requirements for work place safety.


ISO 11138-4:2017

Sterilization of health care products - Biological indicators - Part 4: Biological indicators for dry heat sterilization processes

ISO 11138-4:2017 specifies requirements for test organisms, suspensions, inoculated carriers, biological indicators and test methods intended for use in assessing the performance of sterilization processes employing dry heat as the sterilizing agent at sterilizing temperatures within the range of 120 C to 180 C.

NOTE 1 Requirements for validation and control of dry heat sterilization processes are provided by ISO 20857.

NOTE 2 Requirements for work place safety can be provided by national or regional regulations.


ISO 11138-5:2017

Sterilization of health care products - Biological indicators - Part 5: Biological indicators for low-temperature steam and formaldehyde sterilization processes

ISO 11138-5:2017 specifies requirements for test organisms, suspensions, inoculated carriers, biological indicators and test methods intended for use in assessing the performance of sterilization processes employing low-temperature steam and formaldehyde as the sterilizing agent.

NOTE 1 Requirements for validation and control of low-temperature steam and formaldehyde sterilization processes are provided by ISO 14937.

NOTE 2 Requirements for work place safety can be provided by national or regional regulations.


ISO 11138-7:2019

Sterilization of health care products - Biological indicators - Part 7: Guidance for the selection, use and interpretation of results

This document provides guidance for the selection, use and interpretation of results from application of biological indicators when used in the development, validation and routine monitoring of sterilization processes.

It does not consider those processes that rely solely on physical removal of microorganisms, e.g. filtration.

It is not applicable to combination processes using, for example, washer-disinfectors or flushing and steaming of pipelines.

It does not specify requirements for the selection and use of biological indicators intended to monitor vaporised hydrogen peroxide processes for isolator and room biodecontamination processes at atmospheric pressure.

It is not applicable to liquid immersion sterilization processes.



ISO 11140-3:2007

Sterilization of health care products - Chemical indicators - Part 3: Class 2 indicator systems for use in the Bowie and Dick-type steam penetration test

ISO 11140-3:2007 specifies the requirements for chemical indicators to be used in the steam penetration test for steam sterilizers for wrapped goods, e.g. instruments and porous materials. The indicator for this purpose is a Class 2 indicator as described in ISO 11140-1.

Indicators complying with ISO 11140-3:2007 are intended for use in combination with the standard test pack as described in EN 285. ISO 11140-3:2007 does not consider the performance of the standard test pack, but does specify the performance of the indicators.



ISO 11140-4:2007

Sterilization of health care products - Chemical indicators - Part 4: Class 2 indicators as an alternative to the Bowie and Dick-type test for detection of steam penetration

ISO 11140-4:2007 specifies the performance for a Class 2 indicator to be used as an alternative to the Bowie and Dick-type test for steam sterilizers for wrapped health care goods (instruments, etc. and porous loads).

An indicator complying with ISO 11140-4:2007 incorporates a specified material which is used as a test load. This test load may, or may not, be re-usable. ISO 11140-4:2007 does not specify requirements for the test load, but specifies the performance of the indicator in combination with the test load with which it is intended to be used. The indicator specified in ISO 11140-4:2007 is intended to identify poor steam penetration but does not necessarily indicate the cause of this poor steam penetration.

This part of ISO 11140-4:2007 does not include test methods to establish the suitability of these indicators for use in sterilizers in which the air removal stage does not include evacuation below atmospheric pressure.


ISO 11140-5:2007

Sterilization of health care products - Chemical indicators - Part 5: Class 2 indicators for Bowie and Dick-type air removal tests

ISO 11140-5:2007 specifies the requirements for Class 2 indicators for Bowie and Dick-type air removal tests used to evaluate the effectiveness of air removal during the pre-vacuum phase of pre-vacuum steam sterilization cycles.

Additionally, ISO 11140-5:2007 includes test methods and equipment used to meet these performance requirements.


ISO 15882:2008

Sterilization of health care products - Chemical indicators - Guidance for selection, use and interpretation of results

ISO 15882:2008 provides guidance for the selection, use and interpretation of results of chemical indicators used in process definition, validation and routine monitoring and overall control of sterilization processes.

ISO 15882:2008 applies to indicators that show exposure to sterilization processes by means of physical and/or chemical change of substances, and which are used to monitor one or more of the variables required for a sterilization process. These chemical indicators are not dependent for their action on the presence or absence of a living organism.


ISO 18472:2018

Sterilization of health care products - Biological and chemical indicators - Test equipment

This document specifies the requirements for test equipment to be used to:

— test biological indicators for steam, ethylene oxide gas and dry heat sterilization processes for conformity to the requirements given in ISO 11138 series;

— test chemical indicators for steam, ethylene oxide gas, dry heat and vaporized hydrogen peroxide sterilization processes for conformity to the requirements given in ISO 11140‑1:2014.

This document also provides informative methods useful in characterizing the performance of biological and chemical indicators for intended use and for routine quality control testing.

This document does not specify requirements for test equipment for processes specifically for testing chemical and biological indicators intended to monitor isolator and room biodecontamination processes at atmospheric pressure.

ISO 11138‑2:2017, ISO 11138‑3:2017, ISO 11138‑4:2017 and ISO 11140‑1:2014 require the use of resistometers specified in this document, and these resistometers are used in conjunction with the test methods specified in the appropriate parts of ISO 11138 series and ISO 11140 series.

Resistometers for low temperature steam and formaldehyde indicators are not included in this document. Test methods using laboratory apparatus for low temperature steam and formaldehyde are included in ISO 11138‑5:2017.

Test equipment for testing Type 2 (e.g. Bowie Dick) chemical indicators are specified in ISO 11140‑3:2007, ISO 11140‑4:2007, and ISO 11140‑5:2007.


ANSI Logo

As the voice of the U.S. standards and conformity assessment system, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) empowers its members and constituents to strengthen the U.S. marketplace position in the global economy while helping to assure the safety and health of consumers and the protection of the environment.

CUSTOMER SERVICE
NEW YORK OFFICE
ANSI HEADQUARTERS