Paperclips for eye exam????

  1. Two of my babies got their first exe exam for ROP today on dayshift. In report, the day nurse told me that the Opthamologist said her eye speculum wasn't in her pocket and asked where we kept them on the unit. When she found out we didn't keep any on the unit, she proceeded to fashion one from a paperclip from the nurses' station. She cleaned it with an alcohol swab and rinsed it at the sink before using it. The dayshift charge nurse apparently didn't have a problem with this and my pm shift charge just said "they've done it before".

    Am I hopelessly anal??? Is this OK????

    Thanks in advance or your views.

    P.S. I left the "smilies" out of my post so as not to influence responses (they wouldn't have been smiling).
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  2. 20 Comments

  3. by   dawngloves
    WHAT??!!!
    I've never seen this and I hope I never do!
  4. by   KRVRN
    I've never seen it either.
  5. by   shygirl
    Yes, the eye doctor used it on me once. I do not go to him anymore. My daughter kicked me in the eye when she was a little girl with those hard kid shoes, and I had these floaters that were bugging me, so Mr. Eye used paperclips to press on the circumfrence of my eye. It didn't hurt or anything, it was just weird!
  6. by   prmenrs
    That is NOT standard of practice. ANY WHERE. ANY TIME.

    First of all, if she needs speculae, she needs to bring them w/her---STERILIZED AND PROPERLY PACKAGED.

    Secondly, not all eye docs do-----

    enough said, probably.
  7. by   NicuGal
    They did this on our unit until we got a new opthamologist! He said to never ever do that...a paperclip can have small metal shavings that can imbed in the eye! But they did use those years ago before they had the handy eyeball mover

    I would write an incident report on it personally.
  8. by   gauge14iv
    THe exam packs from central supply - sterile - come with both an eye spec AND a paper clip in them on our unit...I don't know how many use them, but apparently they are used if CS continues to include them
  9. by   nursecheryl
    It sounds pretty dangerous to me. I know our docs used what looked like sterile paperclips if you don't look closely. A doctor once told me you could use paperclips but he never would. Even with the correct equipment it is gross.
  10. by   prmenrs
    There ARE pediatric ophthamologists who can do an EXCELLENT eye exam without a speculum or paper clip or an "eyeball mover". Just so that you know it can be done.
  11. by   nell
    Thanks all for your responses. It sure helps to get some perspective on something I'd never heard of before. I didn't know if I was overreacting or what.

    I talked with the Clinical director of our dept. who said that using paperclips is not Standard of Care and that a letter would be sent to the Opthamologist to that effect. Also, they will work with her to ensure that the proper equipment is available, so this shouldn't happen again.

    I made it clear that I won't stand for it happening again .
  12. by   KDHarvellRN
    We now have to use disposable ROP exam kits for each exam. I have never seen a paper clip used! Ouch!
  13. by   prmenrs
    @KD---Thankfully, this is a really old thread!
  14. by   bennycheng
    hi there...this reply must be so so late. But i would like to share that we also use paperclips during eye exam in our unit. New paperclips soaked in a perfektan endo and rinse by SFI and dry. Though i think it's dangerous but still our ophthalmologists still use it. Sad but true! ( So far no preemies are harmed by this practice.

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