Needlestick yesterday, should I report it?

  1. Long story short I poke myself on the inner part of insulin pen needle, these are safety needles so after injecting the patient the safety guard should have gone up and my thumb shouldn't have been poked

    i assume the safety didn't go up after injection because I did not insert/push down hard enough with the pen on the patients belly when injecting it which is also why the dose likely leaked out of her skin when I removed the pen even though I held it for 10 secs after

    i regave her the dose as you should, but when switching needles on the pen, I poked my thumb with the first used inner part of the needle that inserts into the pen

    The poke on my thumb was superficial and no bleeding, patient is not known HIV or HEP Positive but no idea if she has ever actually been tested.

    i didn't report it yesterday while at clinical because I didn't think much of it and was super busy, as a student this is something that could also ruin the next 4 weeks of my clinical rotation just because it happened (it's a very small hospital and I will be gossiped about non stop)

    but after going home last night it was on my mind, I'm a single mother with a young child to care for and I realize what happened yesterday was potentially a dirty needle stick--a low risk one tho yes

    should I go to dr today, I don't want to report it at the site, which means the patient won't get tested and I prolly won't get PEP, but at least then my labwork can be ordered and started?
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  2. 22 Comments

  3. by   meanmaryjean
    You should have reported it to your instructor immediately. Since you didn't - you should do it immediately NOW.
    It is troubling that you "didn't think too much of it".
  4. by   I like cats
    My instructor is not on site with me so if anyone I should have reported it to the charge nurse or nurse manager
    I am reluctant to report it because of such a low risk and obviously the backlash I will receive from both instructor and the site, it is a small hospital and I have 4 more weeks there that will likely become very very very uncomfortable and I will be gossiped about, especially if I waited a day to report it.

    That being said what matters now is whether or not I get PEP and monitor my labs the next 6 months, I intend to visit doctor today and go from there with what they recommend given the details, and will choose whether to report it after that.

    And yes at the time I didn't think much of it because it was such a small needle and superficial stick, it was also at this interaction with my patient that the patient decided to mention she woke up with one of her eyes completely blurry. She is now referred to a specialist to figure out what's wrong with her eye because she is now blind in that eye overnight.
    This is just one of the many crazy patient issues that occurred yesterday, so to say yesterday was hectic is an understatement
  5. by   Pixie.RN
    Report it. Period.
  6. by   meanmaryjean
    You still need to report this to your instructor and the facility. ASAP. You are going to be in much, much more trouble if you cover this up than if you just do WHAT A PRUDENT NURSE WOULD DO and report the incident.
    You are in no position to judge the risk. None. Do the right thing.
  7. by   Castiela
    I'm kind of concerned that you double dosed a patient with insulin... You don't know how much insulin she had absorbed from your first dose. I would have waited an hour, checked her sugar, then, depending on of the patient was on a sliding scale or not, administered according to that or waited until her next dose
  8. by   Pepper The Cat
    Report it.
    Why do you think you will be gossiped about and receive backlash?
    At most, you will be educated about the importance of reporting needle stick injuries.
    And sounds like you should let your instructor know you need further education about insulin administration. As Castiela stated, you double dosed this pt.
    That is scary
  9. by   I like cats
    I did as per protocol where I live for this patient and consulted the charge nurse before doing so and documented as necessary. Because of this she did receive the dose again, and her glucs were monitored more frequently for the rest of the day and are to be so again today.
    This patients diabetes is well controlled, glucs are stable, and she on long acting insulin only.

    Please keep in mind that you and I may live in different countries and thus do things differently,

    Thank you for only expressing concern and critique for my patient and not my own health and safety regardless that it was my own idiotic mistake.

    not that you in particular care but I have reported the incident and am in the middle of that fun process today.
  10. by   I like cats
    Ditto to you as well, I did as per protocol in my facility for this patient's insulin and consulted the charge as well.
    Read the reply above.

    Thank you for the snark

    And to all, yes I was stupid for getting poked yesterday and not reporting it,
    I have reported it today.
    It hasn't been fun so far.
  11. by   meanmaryjean
    Quote from I like cats
    Ditto to you as well, I did as per protocol in my facility for this patient's insulin and consulted the charge as well.
    Read the reply above.

    Thank you for the snark

    And to all, yes I was stupid for getting poked yesterday and not reporting it,
    I have reported it today.
    It hasn't been fun so far.
    No snark was delivered. Rather, experienced nurses and nurse educators took the time to comment on on a thread that YOU started, providing you with a perspective you seemed to lack regarding this VERY serious issue.

    And I'm willing to bet that the 'not fun' part is from you covering it up- not from the actual needle stick. Hopefully, you learned something here.
  12. by   ThatChickOmi
    Yes. Of course you do. Your safety matters.
  13. by   I like cats
    I fortunately have received no negative feedback from postponing reporting it, apparently I'm far from being the only one who hesitates to do so,

    The 'not fun' is in fact from the needlepoke, the odds are so low, and I'm relieved after starting the process, but still waiting for bloodwork results with that small possibility isn't the greatest.
  14. by   Wannabenurseneko
    I'm not a nurse, but I am taking a phlebotomy class and our teacher said that you should always report if you get stick with a needle specially if you got stuck after using it on a patient

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