When testing patients, clinical accuracy is of utmost importance. Keeping diagnostic tools in perfect condition is an effective way to ensure accurate results and the longevity of the equipment. Here are 6 tips to keep your Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) testing equipment running smoothly while continuing to provide consistently accurate data.
1. Keep it plugged in!
Constantly plugging and unplugging the cables can wear out the connectors. Over time, these wires and cables can become damaged. If you don't need to unplug the system, don’t!
Bonus: If you need to unplug a device, directly grab the black connector itself and carefully unplug the cable. Although there are those who may occasionally yank a vacuum-cleaner cord out from an outlet across the room, PLEASE do not do this with your medical equipment.
2. Make Command Hooks Your New Best Friend!
Command hooks are perfect for the side of your modality cart to avoid tangled cables and keep your system looking neat. Knots are great for sailors, but not medical equipment. Definitely avoid tying your cables in knots and tight coils.
3. Keep it Clean!
A clean system is a happy system! Dirt can build up on the outside of a system and work it’s way into the cables, sensors, and connectors. This will definitely decrease the lifespan of your system and can be detrimental to your ANS system box.
After each patient: Clean the inside of pulse oximeters, ECG leads, sudomotor plates,
Once a month: wipe the system down, check cables and make sure they’re functioning correctly.
Bonus (If you have this option): When cleaning your Sudomotor plates, NEVER spray cleaner directly onto the plates. This will eventually build up in between the plates and plastic backing. Instead, most offices typically use an antibacterial or surface wipe to clean the plates.
4. Let’s Get Cozy
Keep the system close to the patient during testing. A majority of the time, patients are hooked up on the right side of their body (except the pulse oximeter on their left finger). Whether you keep your system on a table, or a modality cart on wheels, make sure the system is as CLOSE to the patient as possible to help avoid pulling and tangling cables.
5. Don’t Dry Out
ECG Electrodes can dry out if the package is left open. The electrodes come in packs of 30 and the packages are made of foil. Make sure to crease the package closed after each use and this will prevent the electrodes from going bad prematurely.
Bonus: Many offices will keep the remaining electrode pouch in a ziplock bag for storage!
6. Are you Updated?
Once a week, check for windows updates on your computer. Follow these instructions:
Click the windows icon (bottom left corner)
Click settings (the small cog icon above the power icon) → Select “Update & Security”
Select “Check for Updates” (EVEN IF THE SYSTEM SAYS IT IS UP TO DATE, HIT CHECK FOR UPDATES!)
Update if needed, usually this will require restarting the computer.
Following tips like these will help keep your equipment working like new. Equipment care helps provide accurate results and ensures your system continues to work for years to come. For any further questions call us at 800-675-1202.