Needle Sticks... Your thoughts

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Comments (4)

Julia in Spokane, Washington

66 months ago

As I was obtaining an ABG, my patient flung their arm up into the air. And before I knew it, I felt a stab on my finger. I got stuck with a dirty needle.

I went to the ER and the doctor took it lightly and called it "minimal" and that it was just "nothing". I on the other hand, am stressed out a bit over this. And I was a bit upset at the MD taking it so lightly.

The chances of me getting Hep B or C is higher than HIV (which is approx 0.3%), but I am a worry-wart, and am worrying over this.

The doctor stated that since I did not get a "flash" in my ABG syringe (which has a small sized needle), that I was probably somewhere in the 3 layers of skin and/or in the capillaries. The doctor then stated that since I bleed well and milked the site well under warm water and then washed quickly with soap, that the risk was very "minimal" and did not recommend prophylaxis treatment. So I decided to get my blood drawn and tested, along with the patients if the patient consents, and to not take the prophylaxis treatment.

Did I make the right decision??

Please share your thoughts, and your stories if you have ever been stuck with a dirty needle.

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Lucy in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

66 months ago

Hi Julia,
I went through this exact scenario. I notified my supervisor, wrote an incident report, saw employee health, and proceeded to get blood drawn once a month for six months to check for Hep C. You are correct that your chances of Hep C are greater than HIV. You need to tell your supervisor immediately. Forget the ER doc. He's probably a rent-a-doc anyway.
Good luck.

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Susan D. in Louisville, Kentucky

66 months ago

Most hospitals have procedures in place to handle needle sticks. Usually what is required is what Lucy did.. make an incident report and notify employee health immediately (usually within an hour of the stick) so that permission can be sought to determine whether the patient has any communicable disease that could have been transmitted, follow up can be done on you and prophylactic treatment can be administered if deemed necessary.

Good luck to you.

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Nila in San Clemente, California

12 months ago

Hi! I actually had the same thing happen to me the other day. I am a worry wary also and was wondering what your results were. I was getting ready to draw the abg and I was just about to stick the patient and I grazed his skin and he flung his arm and the needle stuck my finger (thru the glove) I looked back at his arm a saw a tiny speck of blood but there was no blood on the needle. It was still clean but I took my glove off and my finger was bleeding a little. I went to er and had my labs and his labs drawn. So far I'm negative and up to date with my vaccinations but he is positive for hep c. I went thru employee health and the er pa was very minimal w me and said I should be fine. Any advice for me?

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