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Vag exams with sterile gloves or regular gloves?

Ob/Gyn   (22,819 Views 15 Comments)
by RNBelle RNBelle (Member) Member

4,382 Profile Views; 234 Posts

What are the ACOG or AWHONN guidelines on vag exams and sterile gloves? Is there ever a time when it is appropriate to do an exam with the regular non sterile exam gloves?

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8jimi8ICURN specializes in Flight RN, Trauma1 CVICU STICU MICU CCU.

231 Posts; 7,651 Profile Views

when you are in the pre-hospital setting and don't have any sterile gloves and it is a medical emergency... prolapsed cord. Even in the pre-hospital setting... any ambulance service should have at least 1 OB kit.

When would "you" allow someone to use something un-sterile on "yours?" (Generalized you, i'm not pointing fingers or judging i promise!)

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BrnEyedGirl has 18 years experience as a BSN, MSN, RN, APRN and specializes in Cardiac, ER.

1,235 Posts; 18,683 Profile Views

I've never seen sterile gloves used for non OB exams.

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Anisettes has 26 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in ED, OR, SAF, Corrections.

235 Posts; 7,409 Profile Views

The vagina isn't remotely sterile and barring lacerations or OB considerations (possibly even then), clean gloves are perfectly acceptable. In the OR the vagina is classified by AORN guidelines as Class II/Clean-Contaminated.

For example, say with a laparascopic hysterectomy (or other similar cases where cross contamination between the two sites is possible) there is a 'sterile' filed and a 'clean' field and once anything (glove, instrument, gowned elbow, etc...) touches anything from the vagina or something that's been in contact with the vagina, it's considered contaminated.

So I don't see where you'd need sterile gloves for a vaginal exam. Clean gloves (not dropped on the floor first, of course) should be fine.

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8jimi8ICURN specializes in Flight RN, Trauma1 CVICU STICU MICU CCU.

231 Posts; 7,651 Profile Views

i defer to experienced professionals :)

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234 Posts; 4,382 Profile Views

Thanks! Just curious because we have had some people start using the blue non sterile gloves for vag exams and the rest of us at work were suprised and questioning it.

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dooley specializes in all areas of ob-gyn nursing. er. pacu..

12 Posts; 963 Profile Views

we always use sterile gloves.

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JenTheRN has 10 years experience and specializes in PERI OPERATIVE.

212 Posts; 4,755 Profile Views

Sterile gloves ALWAYS when checking a pregnant vag exam. True the vagina isn't sterile. But when you are doing an exam you always run the risk of adding pathogens that aren't normally in there. Not really a big deal if there is no baby in that uterus. But when there is, it is always better to be safe that sorry and use a sterile glove.

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862 Posts; 7,633 Profile Views

When I do prenatal paps and pelvic exams I do not use sterile gloves/technique. When someone is term, r/o labor at any point, r/o PPROM/PROM/SROM I do. We do sterile spec exams for r/o SROM. That's the procedure for our practice.

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CoffeeRTC has 25 years experience as a BSN, RN.

3,728 Posts; 21,550 Profile Views

Going in for my 39 week check up tomorrow and I'm going to watch what they use. From what I remember as a non ob nurse/ mom of 5...non sterile at the docs and sterile while at the hospital.

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18 Posts; 2,241 Profile Views

I once observed an MD don sterile gloves to do a VE on a pt in labor, then she opened a cabinet with the gloves on, grabbed something from there, and then proceeded to examine the pt without changing them. Yuck and scarey.

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47 Posts; 1,317 Profile Views

We use sterile gloves. Heck I want my care providers to wear sterile gloves to do anything to me (I'm only slightly kidding). Glove boxes are yucky!

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