Living Dangerously - Nebulizer Cleaning

Posted by thumperguy @thumperguy, Mar 12, 2021

I marvel at the time consuming, meticulous way many, perhaps the majority, of contributors to this forum clean and sanitize nebulizers. Following the treatment session I soap and hot water “bathe” the mouthpiece then let it air dry until its next use. The tube gets no special attention except being fully disconnected from the compressor. I’ve read of some regimens aimed at sanitizing shower heads; another activity I ignore entirely. I’m closing in on 16 months free of a “flare-up” involving fever, and an antibiotic to defeat.
The lengthening periods of freedom from acute symptoms is something I attribute solely to learning about 7% saline nebulizer solution which I read about on this forum.
My comparatively minimal attention to “sanitation” may catch up with me but so far so good.

I should add that I realize many forum participants are contending with considerably more virulent pathology than I am. Don

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the MAC & Bronchiectasis group.

@amandajro

@tatilove you will see that I have moved your post into an existing discussion on nebulizer cleaning. There have been several members like @thumperguy @sueinmn @hauoli and @greentree who have been discussion this topic and feel they could share some additional information with you.

How long have you had your Innospire?

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Thanks for getting my post to the right place. I've had the Innospire for a few weeks.

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@sueinmn

Hello, and welcome to the Mayo Connect community. We are people living with a wide variety of diseases and conditions, who try to help one another along the way. We each strive to be informed medical consumers, and our own best advocates in our care. We are not medical professionals, so not able to provide medical advice. We can tell you what has worked for us (or not) and provide you with information and conversation about your question.

As you can see in this discussion, this is a topic of great interest to all of us as we try to stay healthy. My program is pretty simple, and I use it for my nebulizer parts, Aerobika vibratory device and my inhalers and spacer. I described it here: https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/living-dangerously/?pg=9#comment-615922

I will just add that for my daily rinse after use, I use very hot tap water and air dry. This has been my routine for a couple of years, with only one minor exacerbation 2 weeks age.

Other people, especially those who have frequent flares, may have a more conservative approach.

A couple final questions, which Innospire are you using, and do you currently have an active infection?

Sue

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Sue, Are we supposed to be using 'industrial strength' vinegar to clean Aerobika? I have been using 5% vinegar which I dilute (1/2 vinegar and 1/2 water). HELP!

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@patsolstad

Sue, Are we supposed to be using 'industrial strength' vinegar to clean Aerobika? I have been using 5% vinegar which I dilute (1/2 vinegar and 1/2 water). HELP!

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Uh-oh – here comes that detested response again – It depends.

If you boil, you shouldn't need the vinegar at all. If you want to use vinegar, most recommendations say to use 1 part vinegar to 3 parts hot water, and soak 30 minutes every 3 days. (Concentration not specified.) If you have an infection like pseudomonas, MAC or aspergillis, you need to ask your pulmonologist for additional cleaning instructions. When I had MAC, my instructions were wash in soap & water and soak in full strength vinegar every day.

Don't forget – if you use inhales, spacers or vibratory devices like Aerobika, they need the same attention!

Sue

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Thanks, Sue. I guess every doctor has her/his own ideas about cleansing, eh?

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@patsolstad

Thanks, Sue. I guess every doctor has her/his own ideas about cleansing, eh?

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Just like everything else. I follow the recommendation from NJH regarding cleaning. Boil or vinegar. My own pulmonary nurse actually sent me a copy from them.
Sue

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Would the use of a (baby bottle) sterilizer after every use be a good substitute for boiling or vinegar? I read about that on a CF site. I wonder if it would work as well. Any comments?

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@kathyhg

Would the use of a (baby bottle) sterilizer after every use be a good substitute for boiling or vinegar? I read about that on a CF site. I wonder if it would work as well. Any comments?

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I have read it as well, and I don't have a definitive answer, but I can't see why not. It would be the same as the microwave method. I didn't pursue it because I have a TOTAL of 6 feet of counter space, so I shun single-use appliances.
Sue

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Smart. I thought it would save a lot of time as I already spend over 2 hours a day just doing the airway clearance.
I echo Thumperguy in thanking you for volunteering as a mentor on this forum and for doing such an amazing job of it.
Thanks again,

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@sueinmn

Hello, and welcome to the Mayo Connect community. We are people living with a wide variety of diseases and conditions, who try to help one another along the way. We each strive to be informed medical consumers, and our own best advocates in our care. We are not medical professionals, so not able to provide medical advice. We can tell you what has worked for us (or not) and provide you with information and conversation about your question.

As you can see in this discussion, this is a topic of great interest to all of us as we try to stay healthy. My program is pretty simple, and I use it for my nebulizer parts, Aerobika vibratory device and my inhalers and spacer. I described it here: https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/living-dangerously/?pg=9#comment-615922

I will just add that for my daily rinse after use, I use very hot tap water and air dry. This has been my routine for a couple of years, with only one minor exacerbation 2 weeks age.

Other people, especially those who have frequent flares, may have a more conservative approach.

A couple final questions, which Innospire are you using, and do you currently have an active infection?

Sue

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Hi, I have the Innospire Go. No active infection but MAC shows up in my sputum tests…

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@bnthorson

I have been using the Innospire Go for a couple of years. I recharge it about once a month. I find it so much easier to use especially when I travel. I do t know anyone else that uses it??

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Hi, I use the Innospire Go and I like it. Thing is, I am not sure how to clean it properly (I have MAC). Brochure says no microwave and mentions an obscure disinfecting solution but I wonder if I can use Vinegar or alcohol?

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Hi
Soak top in hot soapy water and dry completely after each use
Boil the top for 10 minutes weekly

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I have just washed it immediately with hot soapy water. It is a sensitive machine and I would worry about using anything in it. My first one they replaced after 9 months because it stopped working, This one just died on me two days ago. I really love it but don't like that it doesn't hold up to heavy-duty use and is more expensive than the traditional nebulizers.

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