Difference between Fumigation and Fogging in Pharmaceuticals and other Areas

Fumigation and fogging are two methods which are commonly used in pharmaceutical (Both Sterile & Non sterile) companies to control the microbial contamination in controlled area. But now a day’s fumigation with formaldehyde solution and potassium permanganate is banned by different regulatory agencies in pharmaceutical companies.

The Photo of Fogger Instrument……….fogger

What is Fumigation :

Fumigation is a method in which we use formaldehyde and potassium permanganate chemical in a predefined ratio and by adding potassium permanganate in formaldehyde a reaction takes place and it generate fumes which effectively kill bacteria, fungus, viruses and their spores. This  is very effective method to control the contamination in controlled area.

Drawback of  formaldehyde and potassium permanganate Chemical : 

1. Different regulatory agencies banned fumigation with formaldehyde solution and potassium permanganate as formaldehyde is carcinogenic  (Cancer causing) in nature and there is risk of cancer associate with this to the personnel who is handling formaldehyde.

2. It is not safe for the personnel & there are also other drawbacks like fumigation with formaldehyde causes irritation to the eyes and nose.

3. After fumigation with formaldehyde there is requirement for de-fumigation of area in which AHU (Air Handling Unit) has to be continuously run for few hours without any activity to remove the residues from the air and cleaning and moping of equipments and area is also required.

What is Fogging :

Now a day’s fogging is used in most of the pharmaceuticals to control the microbial contamination in controlled areas and for fogging we require fogger machine and fogging solutions. Different disinfectant are also used for fogging  which can effectively control the area but hydrogen peroxide and silver Nitrate solution commonly used for fogging purpose.Virosil which contains Hydrogen peroxide 10 % and silver Nitrate 0.01 % is  commonly used for Fogging.

Advantages of Fogging with Hydrogen Peroxide and silver Nitrate solution :

1. By the fogger machines solution is sprayed in the area in form of aerosol.

2. The small particles of disinfectant solution suspend in the air for long time  and kill all the air borne bacteria, fungus and their spores.

3. This is also very effective way to control the contamination.

4. It is safe for the personnel as it does not causes irritation to the eyes and nose.

5. There is no requirement of de-fogging and cleaning of equipments and area to remove the residues as it is Hydrogen peroxide based which decomposes into water and Hydrgen.

6. It is also very effective in disinfection of all critical surfaces that comes in contact with pharma products, instruments, bottles and caps can be easily disinfected using a 5% solution.

7. Time can be saved as after fogging no ectra work related to cleaning is required

Area of Application of Foggers :

1. It can be used in Pharmaceuticals with the concentration of 20 % for 1000 cu ft of area.

2.As a surface disinfection with the concentration of 5 %  in floors, walls, table and linen.

3. As a instruments disinfection with the concentration of 10 %

4. Used to eliminate complete microbial load present in storage tanks, raw/process water,pipelines, filters and membranes of the system.

5. It can be also used in Hospitals and Operation Theatre also.

Precautions taken during Fogging :

Use nose mask, safety goggles and Hand gloves during preparation and usage of disinfectant solutions.

Before Fogging AHU (Air Handling Unit) should be OFF & after fogging area should be kept ideal & after 24 hours AHU (Air Handling Unit) should  be continuously run.

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