nurse safety issue - should I be worried?

Nurses General Nursing


So here is what happened and you tell me if I should be worried. I am a pretty new nurse and I just dont know.

I was helping a pt with a tangled up iv line that had D5 1/2NS w/20KCL @ 150 and some morphine prn. as soon as I got close to the iv by her hand, it just blew up on me. I am guessing since it got tangled up, it must have loosend up and as soon as I touched it it just poped open. So I had something squirt in my face. Dont know which side of the line it came from, the line with the IVF going in or was it the catheter that is connected to the pt?

Now things were only going in into this peripheral line, so if it is suddenly disconnected, could anything come out of the patients IV that would potentially squirt in my face? or can I just safely assume that it was the IVF that saquirted in my face?

The pt did not have HIV or any hep, I checked the chart and asked too. THe nurse I was working with said not to worry about it, and after work I stopped by the ER and explained to another nurse and she said not to worry as long as I did not see any blood anywhere, and I didn't.

So wager in on my frustration on wheater I should worry about this.

If you didn't see blood, nothing to worry about. Even if you did that would be incredibly low risk... unless it involved significant amounts in your mouth or eyes, which doesn't seem to be the case.

Now that you've heard from at least two, and now three nurses telling you things are ok, believe it!

Can I add something..... it did squirt in my eyes a little bit. But I washed my face twice to clean anything out. Again, I did not see any blood on my face or on the tip of catheter. Let me know if it changes anything. And I am just freaking out because I have never had any exposure of this type.

I absolutely love working as a nurse and there is nothing I would rather do but this situation just scares me.

No blood = no risk

Specializes in Critical Care/Coronary Care Unit,.

Even though you didn't see still need to go to employee health and file an incident report b/c they need to test you still. They'll test the patient for Hep C and HIV. Be your own advocate. Hope for the best. However, we don't live in a perfect world...still go get checked out.

I would go and get tested as soon as possible for a baseline, then come back whenever they tell you to get tested again.

But like others have said, I wouldn't worry too much about it.

Specializes in ER, ICU.

This is not an unheard of scenario, I had the exact same thing happen once. The odds of transmission are so low they probably aren't measurable. Even if you got frank blood in your eyes, the risk is still pretty low (although I would take that seriously). Especially since the patient didn't have any of the top diseases you'd rather not get. Just chalk it up to experience and keep an eye out in the future.

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