Please help! anybody fam w/lice?

  1. Hi all

    Well to escape that problem w/DS from pre-school and on...I "may" have encountered them at clinical.

    To give the full story, yest we have to p/u Pt care summary and interview pt. we are not to be doing any hands on...upon entering room, pt complained of being cold and she was shaking (DX pancreatitis r/t alcohol abuse) I went to get her blankets not thinking anything of it...I figured she just needed additional blankets...here while I was putting them on her she rolled the others ones up and sort of threw them at me! I did not have gloves etc...as I wasn't expecting this...still not thinking anything of this I proceeded through interview and went home.

    Fast forward to today, pt care given...while doing head to toe..I was partnered up w/fellow student who "thought" they saw "white nits" (she wasn't sure b/c she never saw lice in person, only in pictures!) now the pt is an African american (to give an idea of hair texture) F who admitted today to only washing her hair once a month!!! :uhoh21: Upon disclosing all this to RN other than make faces she couldn't make an assessment, she tried to call an MD...1st MD wouldn't touch it and didn't care...2nd one tried to comb through but said it was very difficult due to the hair being so matted (it was shorter and matted but sort of think Don King as it stuck up everywhere) he said he didn't see anything towards the scalp and thought "maybe" the white observed throught out hair was simply dry skin (my fellow student and I even thought maybe lint) but he said he couldn't say that "for certain" so they are shampooing her and will reassess tomorrow. (I'm not back on the floor tomorrow) I'm thinking b/c of legality issues etc...the Dr can't say for certain she doesnt' but when I pressed him, he said he agreed...good chance she doesn't...it's just prob the hygiene issues.

    After Pt self bathed she put on a cotton bandana on her head..and I noticed the same little white dots...now I'm thinking lice really don't live on the clothing per se.

    My Q after all that, is am I freaking that I may have brought lice home yest w/ the limited contact I had w/the bed sheets unfounded? I mean it really was like 15 sec she handed the stuff to me, I tried in my surprise to hold it out in front of me and disposed in the soiled linen...what are the chances I brought it home w/ that short of contact? Now today...I came home and went straight to the shower w/the clothes in the washer just in case.

    Can you tell "bugs" are my can't stand thing? You can vomit, pee, or have a BM on me...fluids so far don't bother me...but don't get me started on bugs!!! Not tape worms, maggets, leaches...NOTHING...I can't handle bugs and lice is something that freaked me since my son was in preschool!

    TIA....for letting me vent.
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  2. 2 Comments

  3. by   Jamie2887
    Well first off, rest assured, because I have NEVER encountered an African American with head lice, Im sure its not impossible (although I've heard it is) but VERY rare, They can't live in the thickness of the hair. I have friends who also don't wash their hair often, not once a month, more like once a week, but its because their hair will dry out not because of poor hygiene, most still take showers, just wear a shower cap to keep the hair dry. It's probably just dandriff
  4. by   Kitty Hawk
    Quote from Jamie2887
    Well first off, rest assured, because I have NEVER encountered an African American with head lice, Im sure its not impossible (although I've heard it is) but VERY rare, They can't live in the thickness of the hair. I have friends who also don't wash their hair often, not once a month, more like once a week, but its because their hair will dry out not because of poor hygiene, most still take showers, just wear a shower cap to keep the hair dry. It's probably just dandriff
    Awesome! THANK YOU!! that's good to know, store for future ref.

    I feel so bad for this pt. her husband supp cheats after she binges and winds up in hosp. (this is recurring prob) She has plates in her head from abusive ex..she's had two std's...and currently genital warts..however says she has no sexual relations AND she has 7 kids 4 misscarriages! It just breaks my heart to see someone run themselves into the ground like that w/alcohol etc...She really is a sweet lady even if she was going through the hallucinations and paranoias I really wanted to do more to help her...I tried to teach her about nutrional info instead of McDonalds (when she will eat b/c she lost her appetite to boot) but I think it fell on deaf ears Thanks again

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