Ampules still being used, Ouch! - page 3

I have opened several of these little stinkers and hate it every time. I use a 2x2 and have always broken the top away from me. Well, I opened a defective one last night! The top came off and... Read More

  1. by   sister--*
    In addition to what's been mentioned we also have had ampules of Semivanstantin (sp?). An intestinal hormone.

    Those nasty little ampules would pop their tops okay, but the body of the ampule would shatter in your fingers! Only the label kept the glass from flying all over!

    We trialed a safety device that covered only the top of the ampule. It had nothing to hold the top in place once the neck broke so it would "shoot" across the room. In addition there was no "cozy" to protect the nurse from the shattered body of the ampule.

    I think we had three injuries from this in one week....ouch!
  2. by   CritterLover
    [font="comic sans ms"]i think that meds stored in ampules, rather than vials, have a longer shelf life (don't expire as quickly).

    the picc kits i use have 2, 10cc amps of saline and 1, 5 cc amp of lidocaine. when i asked why they came in glass amps rather than something less hazardous, i was told it was to keep the kit from expiring too soon. i have cut myself once, and it was the 3 cc amp of lido that did it. i haven't had a problem with the 10 cc amps of ns.

    i see the following meds in ampules: dig, nubain, epi, narcan, vitamin k, and lopressor. our phenergan now thankfully comes in vials.
  3. by   ICRN2008
    A lot of chemistry controls in the lab come in vials, but one of our manufacturers provided us with an ampule opener. There is virtually no chance of cutting myself with that thing.

    Unfortunately, it only works on 1 ml vials. I had to open a 3 ml vial 2 weekends ago and cut my thumb pretty badly. It wouldn't stop bleeding! (It's fine now).
  4. by   IMustBeCrazy
    Use 2 alcohol packets, open each, stick one on top, one on bottom of ampule and snap.
  5. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    We have the ampule openers. It only took somoene slicing their thumb, slicing through a nerve, for our hospital to think they "might" not be a bad idea.
  6. by   Miss Ludie
    You might want to report this to OSHA also. What if you WERE popping Phenergan and had an allergic reaction through a cut finger? And isn't there a place you report defective medical devices? Report there too.

    I actually have never (knock wood) cut my hand on one. Make sure the little painted circle is at the breaking point. If it's not the the thing will break crooked. I usually hold it in my left hand in an ETOH package and thump the top towards the trash. It's always worked for me. Hope your finger is better by now.
  7. by   rjflyn
    The reusable openers are a great idea but I would be concered about cross contamination of the meds in the amps. As far as stuff out dating, most the drugs we go through so fast its not that much of an issue.

  8. by   nuangel1
    we still have meds in ampules though less the years ago -dig phenergan lopressor iron to name a few.
  9. by   perfectbluebuildings
    Quote from neetnik461
    [FONT=Arial Narrow][SIZE=3]
    [FONT=Arial Narrow]Ampules are a pain, but my biggest safety gripe right now has to do with nimodipine, which is a popular drug given to prevent vasospasm in patients with head bleeds. This med only comes in large capsule form and cannot be crushed. So in order to administer it to patients unable to take PO (which is the majority of patients in ICU), the nurse has to puncture the capsule (with a needle) and squeeze the liquid medication out. The liquid is very viscous and slippery. Several of my co-workers have suffered needle pokes because of this (fortunately I'm not one of them).
    Nimodipine is a pain!!! Luckily we do not have very many pts on it, but the ones we do usually can't take PO. That is a problem.

    The main med we still have in ampules is Demerol. Haven't gotten cut by one yet but I'm sure it will happen eventually, I HATE those things!!! Don't know why they can't package things in vials- IS there some reason does anyone know?
  10. by   crb613
    We still have them phenergan comes to mind....after spending some time searching for a needle w/filter......I was told we don't use those :uhoh21: ......The filter is on the iv.
  11. by   Retired R.N.
    Quote from Rayrae

    The main med we still have in ampules is Demerol. Haven't gotten cut by one yet but I'm sure it will happen eventually, I HATE those things!!! Don't know why they can't package things in vials- IS there some reason does anyone know?
    Demerol came in vials 50 years ago! Someone needs to talk to a few different pharmaceutical reps.
  12. by   abcwood
    At my hospital we have these nice little rubber deals that fit over the amuple top where you break it off and the glass stays in them.
    I think that they work great even better than an alcohol pad.
  13. by   stillpressingon
    We've got phenergan, demerol, and epi in the amps. They are the biggest pain in the butt!!! Never gotten sliced but it's always on my mind...