Are You Using the Right Mask? - page 4

by indigo girl 7,972 Views | 35 Comments

I continue to read of nurses being given surgical masks for protection with swine flu cases. You would think that by now, nurses everywhere would know better, but these stories keep popping up. So for the few of you, who don't... Read More


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    Visitors to patients have disregarded rules throughout time, and especially now, since respect for nurses is waining. It might be good to tell the visitors that observation cameras will record their refusal to obey the rules. When they bring the disease back to their reservation, they can be blamed for deaths that occur because of that...... Good acting is a requirement for that to have the desired effect.

    Good luck!
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    " My understanding regarding the use of proper masks, is that a reliable patient who has H1N1 flu and who hasn't tubes sticking out of their mouths or tracheas (can't get a good fit there), should wear the properly fitted N95 mask when anyone else (including visitors) is present in the room. That catches infective particulates, etc.before they voyage onto another's nose or mouth. When staff or visitors enter the room, both should wear masks, and again if the patient is adequately N95 masked, the other person can wear whatever cheapo mask the hospital sees fit to provide. However, it should be noted that all masks must be changed when sufficient moisture accumulates in either mask, that microorganisms can be propelled faster through the material of the mask they're wearing (that's after sneezing or frequent productive coughing or 10 minutes, whichever comes first)."

    Sorry - The proper use is the reverse rule : the patient wears (if he/she can support) a surgical mask tied in the right way; visitors wear the N95. the more tight sealed the mask, the more likely the patient will blow up it when couhing, talking, and makes the respirator leaks; non speaking of the uncomfort.
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    Quote from janfrn
    Since I last posted to this thread there have been some more changes to our battle plan. Our respiratory therapy manager is leading the charge to ensure that any and every person in a room with a suspect H1N1 patient wear full PPE - N95, gown, gloves and goggles. I've decided I'm not going to worry about the fit of my mask. I've been vaccinated and I'm going to wear the mask I was told fits me (8210) and do whatever else I can to keep myself healthy. Now that we've had our first death on the unit, people are taking it all a little more seriously. I just wish our management would restrict visitors...
    Hi the 8210 is a good mask, similar to the green 1860,minus the extra green protective shield agaisnt the fluids, which is a +++ in bad penumonia/flu cases. But i suppose you wear the standard size; the 1860S, in "small" size is widely worn by female nurses, since it makes a tight seal to their face... Just a hint to try.
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    It's not OK for a unit to be without necessary PPE. Even though you eventually got the correct mask, please drop an email or whatever your method of communication is, and give your Infection Control Nurse a "heads up" about not having them when you needed one. The surgical mask isn't sufficient at all. The plastic shield protects your eyes against a splash, but is very expensive and unless you were doing a procedure wherein it was likely that your face would be splashed, using that was a waste.

    I guess your patient had a positive test for H1N1 (since other "flu" bugs can be identified only at specialized labs), and if so, I don't see why you worried excessively, as you already had that vaccine, which shouldn't have irritated a nerve in your arm. It could have been the mechanical action of the needle hitting a nerve, but I've never known that to more than temporarily cause pain.

    You certainly could have gotten the flu vaccine in an oral spray, if you're not pregnant or over 50 years of age, but not at the same time as the H1N1 oral spray vaccination. It does take over 2 weeks to attain full immunity to H1N1/seasonal flu after the shot........Since the flu vaccine contains live, attenuated virus, it isn't wise to give the two vaccinations at the same time (or week).

    For more information, go to flu.gov
    Last edit by NotReady4PrimeTime on Feb 21, '11 : Reason: removed reference to deleted post
    Laidback Al and NeoNurseTX like this.
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    Your unit is wrong, if N95 masks are not available at any time (a worse case could be a MDR or XDR tuberculosis patient!), you should have denied to enter the room without being fitted with the appropriate respirator.
    At least, in emergency as you tell, you should have put on 2 or 3 surgical masks tightly sealed on your face, and not a single one (this procedure was widely used during sars and avian flu, regarding the failure of N95, please see the pics).
    Regards, dont freak too much yet ! Please keep in touch if you need.
    Anita[IMG]file:///C:/Users/Dominique/Desktop/Sans%20titre.jpg[/IMG]
    NeoNurseTX likes this.
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    Quote from lamazeteacher
    It's not OK for a unit to be without necessary PPE. Even though you eventually got the correct mask, please drop an email or whatever your method of communication is, and give your Infection Control Nurse a "heads up" about not having them when you needed one. The surgical mask isn't sufficient at all. The plastic shield protects your eyes against a splash, but is very expensive and unless you were doing a procedure wherein it was likely that your face would be splashed, using that was a waste.

    I guess your patient had a positive test for H1N1 (since other "flu" bugs can be identified only at specialized labs), and if so, I don't see why you worried excessively, as you already had that vaccine, which shouldn't have irritated a nerve in your arm. It could have been the mechanical action of the needle hitting a nerve, but I've never known that to more than temporarily cause pain.

    You certainly could have gotten the flu vaccine in an oral spray, if you're not pregnant or over 50 years of age, but not at the same time as the H1N1 oral spray vaccination. It does take over 2 weeks to attain full immunity to H1N1/seasonal flu after the shot........Since the flu vaccine contains live, attenuated virus, it isn't wise to give the two vaccinations at the same time (or week).

    For more information, go to flu.gov
    The shot was in 2009 so does it last that long? Yes, it was confirmed H1N1 and we are not allowed to have the nasal spray as it is live and I work with babies. I've heard several complaints of the 2009 H1N1 vaccine causing nerve pain. The shot itself was painless but the symptoms started 2-3 days later and I had treatment under an orthopedic surgeon because it was classic signs of carpal tunnel syndrome, but he did some tests and told me it wasn't.

    I was on the CDC and flu.gov sites for quite some time last night and have emailed my manager with the issue (no one else had been using the N95s) so some unit education is definitely needed here as this is something we don't see often.
    Last edit by NeoNurseTX on Feb 21, '11


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