Finger Sticks

  1. I am a nursing student who is about to graduate and came dangerously close to sticking myself today during a blood draw. I actually pierced my glove but not my skin!!! This really shook me up. Every nurse I talk to has had a dirty stick in their career. This scares me. Do you think it is possible to go through your nursing career without sticking yourself?
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    About nursingirl2007

    Joined: Sep '06; Posts: 17; Likes: 1

    15 Comments

  3. by   Larry77
    I think it is possible...just never let your guard down but also don't be so paranoid you are nervous and shaky.

    Start with good technique so it becomes habit (ie one handed recapping and safety needles).

    I think the biggest danger is when someone leaves a sharp where a sharp is not expected to be found...like bedding or clothes.

    I was stuck when I was going through a pt's jacket (psych pt) but the patient tested negative thank God!

    It can happen to any one of us at any time...hazard of the job.
  4. by   traumaRUs
    Glad you didn't get stuck. Is it realistic to go through your nursing career w/o being stuck? Am not sure. At least for me, it wasn't. I've been a nurse for several years and have had about half a dozen needlesticks - maybe three that were considered high risk: known HIV positive, known hep B, known IV drug user.

    Very scary but fortunately I've been lucky so far. I second above poster's sentiments: you may not be able to avoid all sticks, but practicing good technique is the way to go. Make sure you know your facility's policy regarding needlesticks too: if you choose HIV prophylaxis, you need to get started fairly soon after stick so very important to report ALL sticks.

    Take care.
  5. by   NICU_3_RN
    Quote from Larry77
    Start with good technique so it becomes habit (ie one handed recapping and safety needles).
    There is never any reason to recap any needle, one handed or otherwise.
  6. by   TinyNurse
    agree with NICU3RN....

    I'd be most careful for patients that "jump" as you start the IV, or when you give an extreme psych patient an IM injection, make sure you have enough help.

    I haven't had a stick (knock on wood), but a blood splash yes.

    don't want to hijack the thread, but it's the weirdest thing..........on our insulin syringes, the "safety thing" swivels around, and is really hard to "safety cap". I"m always very paranoid with those.
  7. by   Nurset1981
    I'm not sure its possible. Even though you are taking all the precautions you were taught, there are nurses out there who are lax about thier sharps practice. I never had a needle stick in 6 years until last April. I was a home care nurse and saw a patient for a BS and insulin. The nurse before me didn't remove the lancet from the gluco-pen and of course when I went to open it to put a new one in I got stuck. My first reaction was not fear, but anger. I was outraged that she was so careless and put me in danger(this was not the first time she had left sharps out). Even though it was through a glove, and in the finger, and I knew the risks were minute, I still had that fear. I had to leave work, go to the ER and sit there for 3 hours and get a test that I couldn't get the results of for 4 days. It was on a Friday of a holiday weekend. Of course the test was negative, but the thing I was most upset about was that she didn't have the decency to apologize. Needless to say, I am very very very VERY careful now. Protect yourself and protect your fellow nurses.
  8. by   Epona
    Good advice. Any steps in-particular we should take?? I will start nursing school in Jan.

    Your advice is appreciated! Epona
  9. by   Logan
    Hi,

    Is it possible to go through a nursing career without a fingerstick?

    Finger sticks are accidents. Unless you're plotting to purposely stick yourself, all you can do by practising safe techniques is decrease the chances of an accidental stick - not avoid it completely.

    IMHO ofcourse.

    Thanks,
    Matthew
  10. by   Larry77
    Quote from NICU_3_RN
    There is never any reason to recap any needle, one handed or otherwise.
    I disagree...when you are not able to reach a sharps container I was taught to recap using one hand (without actually clicking the cap shut d/t JAHCO violation).

    Maybe you weren't taught this but I have seen it used by many many nurses with very good results...you are welcome to carry this "uncapped" needle across the room during a code but please not when I'm in the room...thx.
  11. by   Nurset1981
    When it comes to recapping I was taught that you were supposed to bring a sharps container with you into the room if there isn't one already in there. Whenever I do bloodsugars and insulins or injections I bring a small one with me. If I had to recap I'd do the one handed scoop.
  12. by   mamason
    I was taught the one-handed scoop also in nursing school. We were told to use it if there wasn't a sharp's container near by.
  13. by   tde1992
    I agree with NICU 3 RN, you should never recap a needle in any situation. Be conscious of your surroundings. Especially in a code situation you have to keep your head and remain calm otherwise you will get lost in the mist. Put your sharps in the sharps container. Remember to always keep your patient and yourself safe. Also I see a lot of nurses getting blood with a syringe then transferring it to a vial with a needle, that is another no no, your facility should have a needless transfer device use those as much as possible also.
  14. by   HR1973
    Quote from Larry77
    I disagree...when you are not able to reach a sharps container I was taught to recap using one hand (without actually clicking the cap shut d/t JAHCO violation).

    Maybe you weren't taught this but I have seen it used by many many nurses with very good results...you are welcome to carry this "uncapped" needle across the room during a code but please not when I'm in the room...thx.
    Thank you Larry for your advice, I do the same.... and I hope that everyone who read this copy this...

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