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Sterilization & disinfection

Updated on April 11, 2016

Sterilization Vs. Disinfection

The term sterilization means complete removal of any life form or microorganisms including endospores. Whereas, disinfection means elimination of most or all viable microorganisms except endospores.

Sterilization can be achieved usually by mechanical means e.g. heat, chemicals or radiation; while disinfection can be achieved in a much milder way by some chemical disinfectants.

For example the Pasteurized milk we consume is a sterilized product while before consuming food we disinfect our hands with soap. In dental clinic or hospital the instruments used for operation are sterilized by autoclave or the room is sterilized by radiation but before injecting body surface is getting disinfected by alcohol.


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