Removing Staples.... - page 2

I had a great day today, but did have a problem removing someone's staples. Lady is s/p R TKR, and that alone is bizzare, I have never had a surgeon want us to remove staples for TKR. I have done lots of hips and other areas,... Read More

  1. 0
    In the SNF setting we take staples out all the time and some times it's easier than others. Most of the time we can guess the surgeon by the way the staples look.
    I'll never forget one guy I his mid 50's...macho type. His knee was healing perfectly. I went in to take out his staples and before I even touched him, he started to holler. I took out one staple and he screamed..."This is worse than having a baby!!!" I looked at him and said "...and you'd know this how???" I offered him a bullet to bite and he said "Oh, you're right...I'm being a baby"
    Just remember, it's not always you or your technique or the equipment. Some people just like to make a commotion about everything.

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  2. 0
    I had knee replacement surgery Sept 5th........Had a hip put in about 11 yrs ago and removing staples was pretty easy procedure......but when the nurse started removing my knee was like she was ripping them out......had to stopped her 3 times.....I broke out in a sweat and almost became nauseated...that 30 seconds or so was the worse pain of the whole operation......I know the nurse was NOT trying to hurt me......she tried to remove them extremely fast?....I have doc appointment soon and I will let the doc know how painful this procedure was.....he left the room somewhat in a hurry knowing that this was going to be painful........and I'm not blaming the thinking is......this is 2007 and these kind of procedures should be relatively painless.......I checked with several other people that had knee replacement surgery and they did not complain about lots of pain when the their staples were removed.......

  3. 0
    One technique I learned after my c-section that I've told my pts with staples: put bacitracin ointment on them daily, it prevents or minimizes any crusty sticking between the skin and staples. It will still hurt in the knees but at least there won't be that extra pinch with each staple pulled.
  4. 0
    Bacitracin is not a good recommendation. It causes the overgrowth of all sorts of other nasty bugs. I won't let it in my building.
  5. 0
    Interesting comment on bacitracin. See it everywhere.
  6. 0
    Quote from caliotter3
    Interesting comment on bacitracin. See it everywhere.
    And this is truly the first time I have ever heard/read about it... right here!

    We use a LOT of bacitracin. :uhoh21:

    Any article links to back that up? Might want to send this on to our agency clinical director or WC folks for discussion. hmmmmmmm.

    Is Neopsporin any better? Any recommendations?
  7. 0
    Difference between bacitracin and bactroban.

    We only use peroxide and h20, no ointment.

    Patients with edema I reluctant to remove staples....remove every other one especially if c/o discomfort; if really miserable, I'll stop and send to MD especially if repeat and suspect infection or too much fluid beneath knee. Bracing either side of incision with 3 fingers over knee then gently removing AFTER I soaked areas with peroxide if too crusty helps. ...slap those steri strips on ASAP too.


    As with other antibiotic preparations, prolonged use of POLYSPORIN Ophthalmic Ointment may result in overgrowth of nonsusceptible organisms including fungi. If superinfection occurs, appropriate measures should be initiated.
    Bacterial resistance to POLYSPORIN Ointment may also develop. If purulent discharge, inflammation
  8. 0
    Peroxide??? It's against CMS guidelines to use peroxide full strength or even 1/2 strength. It is cytotoxic. It's another product I won't allow in the building. Sorry I can't cite an article about bacitracin but I do remember reading about it and hearing it from one of the infectious disease docs at the hospital. If we keep slapping antibiotic ointment on wounds without cause, we are doomed to more resistant bacteria.
  9. 2
    trying to get doctors to change practice standards is a challenge!

    there is a difference between wd care to fresh surgical incision and chronic wound care too.
    most of our surgical wd care is clean soap and water or nss, air dry or if scant drainage, dry sterile dressing. most stappled wounds are open to air 2-3 days post op for our otho patients.

    caution: common topicals may be hazardous to your patient’s health
    pg 2

    topical antibiotic creams have been
    implicated as a common cause of
    allergic contact dermatitis per a recent
    mayo clinic study reported at the 2006
    american academy of dermatology
    convention. the top ten allergens
    found in contact dermatitis are:
    • nickel
    • gold
    balsam of peru (found in
    granulex and xenaderm)
    • thimerosol (found in vaccine)
    neomycin sulfate (found in first
    aid creams including triple
    antibiotic ointment [tao])
    • formaldehyde
    • cobalt chloride
    • quanternium 15
    • fragrance mix

    good resource produced by pa's quality improvment org

    quality insights of pennsylvania

    surgical wound care: patient self care booklet

    ceu article:

    copyright 2007 by the wound, ostomy and continence nurses society volume 34(5), september/october 2007, p 499–504

    topical therapy

    principles of surgical wound healing are similar to those of any wound, including moisture balance in the wound and attention to systemic factors necessary for wound healing and tissue repair. the first postoperative dressing change may be performed by the surgeon, but additional changes are often performed by nurses. the specifics of wound care vary, depending on whether the wound is expected to heal by primary or secondary intention; wounds healing by primary intention are closed at the surface, whereas wounds healing by delayed primary or secondary intention are left open to drain. careful selection of a dressing that matches the goals of topical therapy, compliance with principles of asepsis or appropriate clean technique, and adherence to universal precautions are essential to optimal healing. primary intention healing requires approximating the edges of the wound with a mechanical device such as sutures, staples, or adhesive strips for minimal scar formation. occasionally when dead tissue has been removed, the surgical incision is left open to heal by delayed primary intention. in this case, the wound edges are initially left open and brought together within 4 to 6 days before granulation tissue can be seen. healing by delayed primary intention is frequently used after traumatic injuries and in dirty wounds. 1,35,36

    the dressing for wounds healing by primary intention is usually left in place for 24 to 48 hours unless significant drainage or bleeding from the wound site occurs. the goal of the dressing is to provide a bacterial barrier until re-epithelialization has taken place and the wound closes. the decision to remove the dressing using clean or aseptic technique varies according to the condition of the wound and the patient's overall health. regardless of the technique employed, care is taken to prevent infected materials from contacting the wound. 6,7,20,33 the wound is gently packed with moist sterile gauze and dressing changes are performed every 4 to 6 hours during wound healing. closed wounds can be sufficiently cleaned with normal saline. however, if it is established that there is some kind of infection in the wound, it can be cleansed with hydrogen peroxide, iodine, or acetic acid, according to the type of microorganisms present. 37

    systemic measures to promote wound healing by primary intention should maximize incisional blood flow and oxygenation. specific strategies include maintenance of adequate hydration, aggressive pain management to prevent excessive sympathetic stimulation and vasoconstriction, measures to keep the patient (and wound bed) warm, and emotional support to minimize anxiety. 6,7,20,33

    secondary intention healing occurs when the wound is infected or there has been excessive trauma or skin loss. in this case, the wound edges are left open and closure requires formation of granulation tissue, contraction of the wound edges, and epithelial resurfacing. 1,35,36 in many situations, the process of wound healing is further complicated by patient characteristics or comorbidities that interfere with healing such as advanced age, immunosuppression, radiotherapy or chemotherapy, administration of corticosteroids, malnutrition, diabetes mellitus, or vasopressor therapy. 35

    during the dressing change in wounds healing by secondary intention, the nurse should assess the wound for color, odor, and amount of drainage. 38,39 wounds characterized by red healthy tissue should be kept lightly moist and protected from excessive trauma until healing occurs. the optimal dressing is selected based on the wound's depth, presence of tunneling or undermined areas, and the volume of exudate. wounds with significant depth or tunneling and moderate to large amounts of exudate are ideally managed with an absorptive dressing such as an alginate, while wounds with depth but minimal amounts of exudate are usually best managed with amorphous gels, damp fluffed gauze, and a transparent film cover dressing. wounds that are infected or critically colonized may be dressed with a dressing that contains an anti-infective agent such as a sustained release iodine or topical antibiotic. 38-40 in recent years there has been an increase in the availability of silver impregnated dressings. silver and silver compounds are used successfully in the treatment of acute and chronic wounds for their property of inhibiting multiple types of bacteria. 6,7,26,36

    in wounds with necrotic tissue, a topical therapy is selected that removes necrotic tissue and establishes a clean wound bed. 38-40 debridement options would include enzymatic agents containing collagenase, papain-urea, or papain-urea with a chlorophyllin-copper complex or with dressings that maintain a moist wound bed that supports autolysis. wounds with more extensive necrosis may undergo sharp or mechanical wound debridement as well.

    wounds left to heal by tertiary intention are left open until the infection has been controlled and a clean wound bed is achieved. in this case, the edges are brought as closely together as possible and sutured in place only after infection has been eradicated, and necrotic tissue excised. in general the scar that is left after healing by secondary or tertiary intention is wider and deeper than scars left after healing by primary intention. 39

    topical therapy for wounds left to heal by tertiary intention may include autolytic or enzymatic debridement to eliminate necrotic tissue, agents to reduce the bacterial load on the wound surface, and vacuum-assisted closure devices to create a well-vascularized wound bed prior to surgical closure. 6,7,26,36

    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Nov 27, '07

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