How Common are Needle Sticks



  1. After reading the thread about being stuck with a needle 6 weeks into nursing school, I read the replys and was concerned.

    I realize that this a real danger, but
    From the replies it seems to happen more often than I thought.


    How common is this occurance? How many have had needlestick injuries.

    I do realize this is a hazard that comes with the job, but I would like to assess my risk.

    Thanks to all of you,

    Terri
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  2. 22 Comments

  3. by   renerian
    In 16 years I have only been "stabbed once" and the patient took the needle from my hand, I was on the way to the waste receptacle and turned around and stabbed me in the hand. Hurt like hell..he was a psyc patient. I was not happy.

    renerian
  4. by   ICUBecky
    every nurse that i have known and worked with have all been stuck, at least once (me too). all of them are all negative for everything, except for one. he unfortunately got hep C. i also witnessed an MD who was intubating and HIV + patient that coughed up sputum right into his eye (despite the fact the MD was wearing glasses) he is also, negative for everything. nursing is a very risky profession, and things happen if you are careful or not. but, it seems like statistics are on our side.
  5. by   Rustyhammer
    I got stuck once (15 years nursing). No ill effects.
    It was my own fault. In a hurry while recapping.
    -Russell
  6. by   Zee_RN
    I really really really don't want to jinx myself. Thus far, I've only been stuck with clean needles. (FINGERS CROSSED AND HEXES MADE TO WARD OFF JINX!!!). I've been in nursing since 1995. But I know a couple of nurses that have been stuck; all negative.
  7. by   shygirl
    I got stuck about 3 years ago. I was so freaked out. I had to wait 2 weeks while they tested her blood. All came back fine, Thank God!
    Shygirl
  8. by   deespoohbear
    I have been stuck twice with "containamited" needles, and both of those were before needleless systems were mandatory. I was trying to flush a saline lock on a 3 month old and the baby moved her arm and I got stuck. The other time it was when I was doing an IV push on a pt and I don't remember how I got stuck. Since we went needleless (thank you OSHA!!!) I stuck my self with a clean needle once. I was taking off the cap to draw up medication and stuck myself.

    Like another poster said, the statistics are on are side.

    (Quite frankly I am more concerned about getting assualted by an angry pt or family member today than I am about getting stuck. ).
  9. by   meandragonbrett
    Needleless?? Are you talking about where the needles retract or what? j\w

    Brett
  10. by   ernurse728
    Needleless systems make it so that when giving IV push meds and stuff you don't have to use a needle...there is a special connector piece on syringes and IV tubing. This in itself helps...but working in the ER we still give a lot of IM shots which pose the risk of sticks, as well as all the people coming in with their bleeding wounds dripping all over the place and stuff.
  11. by   deespoohbear
    Yeah, that is what I mean by needleless. Makes it a lot safer for giving IVP's. We give IM's some but not as much since we are a general med-surg floor. I thought everybody had to have needleless systems in place by July 2001 or so. Federal mandate. The ports on the IV systems have a special connector on them. The syringes (without using the needle) just screw right on to the connecter. Ours is the Clave system, and we use Plum IV pumps by Abbott. I really like the needleless systems. At least it decreases our chances of being stuck.
  12. by   deespoohbear
    http://www.life-assist.com/iv/clave.html

    Here is the link for the Clave system.
  13. by   meandragonbrett
    Ok, I gotcha. I was thinking IM w\o needles!! Thanks for clearing that up.

    Brett
  14. by   canoehead
    I think that based on the number of sticks per nurse in our hospital everyone will get stuck by the time they spend 10 years in nursing. However, as time goes by they are making it harder to get stuck with special automatic caps on the used needles etc, so that number will likely go down. Whenever I've been stuck I've been stressed and in a hurry, so being aware of yourself when you have a dirty needle in hand is probably the best preventative.

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