6 weeks into school, I got stuck and i don't know what to do

  1. Hi all...so, i'm in my 6th week of nursing school and i got stuck w/ a used diabetes lancet...my prof. rushed me to student health services where they took my blood to test for everything, gave me my 2nd Hep A&B immunization and told me to come back tomorrow to talk w/ medical director & get put on antiviral "cocktail"

    at some point the PA suggested i get a Hep "immunoglobin" (have no idea if i spelled that right) but then the nurse said that they're like $350.00 and i should wait and see what my titer says

    (just FYI - the diabetes lancet was from one of about 5 people at a senior center in a "medically underserved area" and had been used AT LEAST (probably more than) 30 min before i got stuck w/ it)

    PLEASE tell me what I should do - should i go on the cocktail? what about the immuno...thingy? should i make the school pay my medical bills?

    any help y'all might provide will be greatly appreciated!
    Sarah
    •  
  2. 77 Comments

  3. by   RENAISSANCE RN
    Hi,

    I really feel for you.. this is my worst fear..

    (((((Hugs))))

    Terri

    Hopefully it would be nothing. I would listen to the MD's
    did you fill out an accident report?
  4. by   llg
    I would do whatever your doctor or the nurse practitioner recommends. The cost and/or inconvenience are irrelevant. Your school should DEFINITELY have a policy about how the expense gets covered. Your own personal medical insurance may also pick up most of the cost of any treatment prescribed by your doc/np.

    llg
  5. by   renerian
    I have gotten stuck with a used needle a patient stabbed me in the web of my thumb and finger area and I just got tested for HIV, I already had the hep b series, retested for HIV at 6 months and one year, the client was tested but I never was asked to take a cocktail. Could be a policy they have. What is the cocktail and how long do you have to take it? did they test you for HIV?

    renerian
  6. by   caliotter3
    My first needlestick happened when one of my patients was HIV positive. I reported it to the supervisor and we determined that since it happened after I had left his room and was with my other patient (not HIV positive) that we would just let it go. Not even an incident report. Back then there was not quite the emphasis there is today. In another situation one of my CNA's told me that an HIV positive resident had been admitted to the LTC facility where we were working and she got into big time trouble when, after being blown off by the mgmt for posing the question, she called the DHS concerning this. Mgmt had no intention of telling staff, much less taking any kind of precautions. The poor CNA was only trying to protect herself and ended up paying for HIV tests herself when she was exposed to body fluids from this resident. She didn't leave the facility b/c she said that she knew they would blacklist her. The best thing I can advise is to follow your doctor's advice, take the tests, and whatever other steps are recommended. At least you are not facing a "sweep it under the rug" attitude. Thank goodness for that.
  7. by   beaRNwhenIgroUP
    renerian: yeah...they tested me today but i have to wait 7-10 days...i think they're saying they'll prescribe AZT! yeah, that's what the student handbook says...

    thanks to all for all of your replies - so FAST!

    y'all are great,
    Sarah
    Last edit by beaRNwhenIgroUP on Sep 26, '02
  8. by   RN auditor
    I would definitely want the know the side effects of the "cocktail" they were wanting to prescribe to me. Then you could do a pros/cons deal and weigh if it is worth it to you.
  9. by   SmilingBluEyes
    (((sarah))) Isure have nothing to add over what was said here. I just wish to offer my support and a hug. I wish well for you; let us know how things progress. This truly is every health care provider's worst nightmare; I am so sorry this had to happen to you.
  10. by   prn nurse
    Scary. I've been stuck about 3 times.

    What were the circumstances that the lancet was where you would be stuck with it?

    I see lotsa stuff casually stuck into sharps containers and hanging out of them.... my pet peeve.

    I agree with all of the good advice you've received here.

    I hope this is the last stick of a long and successful nursing career.
  11. by   CaliNurse
    beaRNwhenIgroUP,

    We just did an inservice on this yesterday. I will bring home the paper tomorrow.

    FIRST, THE PATIENT MUST BE TESTED. That is an automatic occurence at our facility. If their is a stick we have a preprinted doctors order sheet that patient is tested for EVERYTHING!

    I really feel for you. All hospitals have a responsibility to use safety syringes and when we switched over our lancets were changed also. They should self retract below the opening.

    That doesn't help now but that hospital should change it now. If I were you I would ask them about the Migdin Bill. You should look that bill up on the internet. I am not sure if that is the correct spelling but that is the pronounciation. ALL syringes in should be safety syringes. They only lancets that I know about that are not retractable that are still used are in home care, when the unit is only used by one patient.

    IF THEY TEST THE PATIENT AND THE PATIENT IS FREE OF ANY DESEASE THIS WILL TAKE A MAJOR STRESS OFF OF YOU. They often do this for legal cases when the person is threatening a legal action they will test the patient who's blood it was to determine if there is anything to fight about.

    START all prophalaxis NOW, including the globulin. THIS SHOULD ALL BE PROVIDED BY THE HOSPITAL. They will give students free hep series, free flu shots, it was their patient, it was their supplies, they should provide the follow up care.

    I hope this helps. In fact I would wait for tomorrow if I were you I would call them and tell them that you want it NOW!

    Cali
  12. by   beaRNwhenIgroUP
    calinurse, well...the situation was a litle funny...

    we were at a congregeate meal site for seniors in a medically underserved area...apparently we were providing more glucose monitoring than any group has done before (last 4 years)...so we weren't really prepared to handle it...

    anyhow, our first week, the prof told us to just recap the little lancets (they have these little round caps that twist off and you can just stab them w/ the little needle end of the lancet when done) and put them in a glove. then, at the end of the day we gave them to our prof - who then put them in a sharps container...

    so, TODAY, she came out to clinical site and said something about how using the glove was not the best thing and she had been digging through them to dispose of the sharps. so, w/out even thinking about it, i began to dig them out and put them in a coke bottle...(why we didn't think of this before is beyond me) so the LAST lancet of the last glove BIT me...It all sounds so crazy now looking back on it...

    TO ALL:
    thank you SO MUCH for all of the support - you guys are great and I know how fortunate I am to have found allnurses.com
    Sarah
  13. by   P_RN
    In 28+ years I have been stuck three times. I remember every moment of all three times. The first two were a LONG time ago....prehistoric even, but ONE was by a surgeon inserting a central line who handed me the USED heparin flush syringe NEEDLE FIRST. He never even said he was sorry!

    That was over 15 years ago and I STILL worry. BTW the patient was a prostitute with gonorrhea......

    All my tests were negative, I chose not to take the cocktail and I STILL wonder.
  14. by   kittyw
    Originally posted by beaRNwhenIgroUP
    calinurse, well...the situation was a litle funny...

    we were at a congregeate meal site for seniors in a medically underserved area...apparently we were providing more glucose monitoring than any group has done before (last 4 years)...so we weren't really prepared to handle it...

    anyhow, our first week, the prof told us to just recap the little lancets (they have these little round caps that twist off and you can just stab them w/ the little needle end of the lancet when done) and put them in a glove. then, at the end of the day we gave them to our prof - who then put them in a sharps container...

    so, TODAY, she came out to clinical site and said something about how using the glove was not the best thing and she had been digging through them to dispose of the sharps. so, w/out even thinking about it, i began to dig them out and put them in a coke bottle...(why we didn't think of this before is beyond me) so the LAST lancet of the last glove BIT me...It all sounds so crazy now looking back on it...

    TO ALL:
    thank you SO MUCH for all of the support - you guys are great and I know how fortunate I am to have found allnurses.com
    Sarah
    OH MY GOSH!!! What the heck was she thinking??? Recap a used lancet???????? No sharps container????? <shaking head> The prof should have known better!!!!!!

    Based on what I've read, you have no clue which resident's lancet this one was - so you can't do the patient testing. I'd be pitching a fit - and demanding that the school handle the necessary costs of meds/treatment. The way the prof handled this situation (no sharps, recapping, putting them in gloves!! what kind of protection is that providing??) was very unprofessional and dangerous!

    Kitty (((Hugs)))

close