Has anyone ever seen this done before?

  1. 0
    So last week I was assisting one of the providers at my employment and witnessed something I have never seen before. The patient we were caring for had a large leg wound. The provider wanted to culture the wound. So I prepared the patient and the room. The provider comes in and takes the swab of the culture and runs in under water from the faucet. She stated "I always get a better sample if the swab is wet first". Is this an accepted practice? Seems to me the culture swab would be contaminated from the tap water, and therefore the culture would not only be from the wound, but whatever else was lurking in the spigot, and the city water.Has anyone else witnessed this?
  2. 17 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    I really don't see how that is supposed to produce more accurate results.
  4. 6
    No, never and you are 100% correct that culture is worthless! One can only wonder how many people were given antibiotics that were not appropriate for the infections they really had or that they never had at all!
  5. 9
    NO NO NO NO Swabs are supposed to be sterile. And who knows what is being introduced INTO the wound???

    OY VEY !!!!
    Last edit by merlee on May 21, '11 : Reason: spacing
  6. 5
    Apparently somebody was trying to kill this patient.
  7. 18
    It may work better when wet, but umm maybe try sterile saline instead.
    Orange Tree, Aeterna, ChristineN, and 15 others like this.
  8. 7
    Oh wow! I would write that incident up in a heart beat. That is WRONG!
  9. 2
    whoa. what?!
    Orange Tree and dragonfly55 like this.
  10. 7
    I second Casi. I have seen swabs dampened with sterile saline before collection, for instance when the area being swabbed was quite dry (like an armpit or nose for MRSA), but it was sterile!You should inform the lab or your nurse manager about this so they can do some reeducation.
  11. 3
    Gross! Who knows what junk they were introducing into the wound!


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