Published May 29, 2002
Also today at work when I was taking out someone's port needle, I ended up sticking myself. Not hard, but just a little poke, not any blood or anything. One of the nurses told me to fill out an incident report to be checked for hepatitis, etc. But my charge nurse said it was up to me. Another nurse told me she wouldn't bother. I'd have to go to ER, pee in a cup, have all the blood tests run on me and to tell you the truth I just didn't have the time today, I was so far behind. What are the chances that I could catch hepatitis from this patient or something else for that matter???
Well, here's the deal with the needle stick. Since you didn't report it and didn't have blood drawn now there is no way for you to be covered by the hospital if you do happen to come down with HIV or HEP C (which is actually quite easy to catch.). The other reason it's good to do a report is that the patient is tested so you have some idea if they can give you Hep C or HIV. If you drew no blood with the needle poke, did you even break the skin? If you didn't break the skin, then there is no poke.
I've been through one exposure (pt vomited blood all over me, in my eyes, mouth etc, was sort of a surprise vomit...) and unfortunately the pt was positive for Hep C. I still go and get blood drawn, and I am entirely inelligible to donate blood.
I'm not saying it was wrong or right to not get the report filled out, just sort of stating things from the way I see it.
It seems like a PIA but fill out the incident report. NEVER let someone cause you not to fill one out. Yea, it is up to you. However, a responsible charge nurse would have encouraged you to fill it out.
I have been through a needle stick. It was an extreemly bussy day and we were short staffed. You know what they survived while I went and got tested.
The testing was no big deal. If I came down with hepatitis or HIV that would have been a big deal. Hepatitis unlike HIV is VERY virulent. It doesn't take much of an exposure to infect. fill out the incident report, and go for testing. If not for you for your family.
dawngloves, BSN, RN
Aways always alway fill out an incident report when you are injured at work, no matter how small it seems at the time. You never know what will happen down the line.
That needle stick, back strain, bonk on the head from the TV sticking out could turn into something debilitating
Ok, if you didn't break your skin, then there wasn't a needlestick. No problem, no report to fill out.
However, if it did break your skin , you need to fill out a first report of injury IMMEDIATELY & see your employee health folks as well.
I've been there. I missed the vein on an HIV+ dude (possible Hep C as well), & tried to get the needle into an overfull needlebox (it was locked to the wall & night shift wasn't provided with a key & the 3-11 environmental svcs person was on vacation)
I went through 6 months of HIV testing, stress on my marriage...including the threat from my now ex-husband that if it happened again, our marriage would be over...feelings of isolation & lots of other fun stuff.
I've never been so proud to be negative in my life!
Go back in & take of this if you haven't yet. You are TOO important to not take care of yourself!
What isj all this talk about "if you didn't break the skin"
A needle stick is a needle stick. If you were stuck the skin was broke period. You don't have to see a hole for there to be one. Gee! Such rationalizing! From nurses yet!!
Originally posted by Agnus What isj all this talk about "if you didn't break the skin"A needle stick is a needle stick. If you were stuck the skin was broke period. You don't have to see a hole for there to be one. Gee! Such rationalizing! From nurses yet!! [/quoteI agree!!! One of the techs in the ER where I work got stuck with a needle when trying to put it in a full needle box. He said he was ok and didn't want to do anything. The pt was a former nurse in her 50's that was there for altered mental status.I told him he had to be seen and go through the protocol for a needle stick. I also had the lab run tests on the pt., since the blood was already drawn we didn't have to get permission.Well this lady came back HIV+. Our tech(who we love dearly) is now taking the protocol meds(which are making him sick)and waiting on pins and needles for his test results to come back.Please never play around with needle sticks. Your life may depend on it.P.S. Please pray for our tech, he needs all the help he can get!!!!
A needle stick is a needle stick. If you were stuck the skin was broke period. You don't have to see a hole for there to be one. Gee! Such rationalizing! From nurses yet!! [/quote
I agree!!! One of the techs in the ER where I work got stuck with a needle when trying to put it in a full needle box. He said he was ok and didn't want to do anything. The pt was a former nurse in her 50's that was there for altered mental status.
I told him he had to be seen and go through the protocol for a needle stick. I also had the lab run tests on the pt., since the blood was already drawn we didn't have to get permission.
Well this lady came back HIV+.
Our tech(who we love dearly) is now taking the protocol meds(which are making him sick)and waiting on pins and needles for his test results to come back.
Please never play around with needle sticks. Your life may depend on it.
P.S. Please pray for our tech, he needs all the help he can get!!!!
moonshadeau, ADN, BSN, MSN, RN, APN, NP, CNS
Even a "near stick" is reportable at our hosptial. This is to prevent those from from happening again. We had one person who got stuck because a nurse left a shaving razor blade in the patient room without discarding it and the housekeeper stuck it back in our nurse server, the aide reached it not thinking that anything like that would be in there and got stuck. Because she was stuck we knew that this was a problem and were more cautious about sticking our hands somewhere. Another nurse got stuck by trying to open Lipid bottle with a pair of used dressing scissors and got stuck. If she hadn't reported it, we may not have known the patient was Hep C positive. Bad for the patient and the nurse who should have known better. Report, Report, Report. It is a pain in the butt, but you can save yourself heartache later.
NurseDennie, BSN, RN
I'll add my 2 Cents - looks like it happened today? Go back and report it!
NicuGal, MSN, RN
I agree...you need to fill out that report, you may think it is a PIA, but 5 years from now if something comes from it you will be SOL.
And thanks for all your responses....just an update. I went to OCC Health today and they asked me if the patient was still in the hospital. She was discharged yesterday evening, that's when the incident happened. They wanted to know why it wasn't reported earlier and I told them the situation about my charge nurse telling me it was up to me and they said if Risk Management knew about it, she'd be fired.....So they drew four vials of blood on me. The patient has to be called and requested to come back to have her blood drawn. If she agrees, they only have to follow up with me for six mos. If she doesn't, a year. I was also put on Keflex for ten days just in case the woman has an infection. Has this happened to anyone and the patient was already gone??
All I can say when in doubt cover thy self. Even if it was a near poke get tested anyway. Your health is no joke. As for that charge nurse she should be reprimanded for that. Never take chances on someone else's word. I stuck myself with sterile needles thank goodness not being contaminated with a person's blood. It happens to the best of the best.
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