Processes

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Needle stick injuries are one of the most frequent occupational hazards faced by nurses. Needle stick injuries are percutaneous piercing wounds caused by needles that accidentally puncture the skin. These injuries can occur at any time when nurses use, disassemble, or dispose of needles. When these needles are not disposed in a proper way, needles become concealed in linen or garbage and injure other workers who encounter them unexpectedly. It is very common in the health care environment. When drawing blood from a patient, encountering an intramuscular or intravenous drug, or performing other procedures involving needles, it can slip and injure the nurses. This sets the stage to transmit viruses from the source person to the recipient. These injuries also commonly occur during needle recapping and as a result of failure to place used needles in approved containers. During surgery, a surgical needle may inadvertently penetrate the glove and skin of the surgeon or nurses. Penetrating accidents of the surgeon or nurses with the scalpel or other sharp instruments are also handled as a needle stick injury. Generally needle stick injuries cause only minor bleeding or visible trauma. However, even in the absence of bleeding the risk of viral infection remains. While needle stick injuries have the capabilities of transmitting bacteria, protozoa, viruses and prions from a practical point of the transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), hepatitis B (HBV) and hepatitis C (HCV). Many nurses had been accidentally exposed to HIV mostly through needle stick injuries and when drawing blood from patients infected with HIV virus. Injuries with a hollow-bore needle, deep penetration, visible blood on the needle, a needle that was located in a deep artery or vein, or with blood from terminally ill patients are known to increase the risk for HIV infection. Tragically, there is no vaccine or treatment for HCV, so nurses exposed to HCV-contaminated blood


References: 20and%20testemonials/Article_Prevention_DisablingBackInjuries.pdf -http://www.rti.org/pubs/rr-0017-1204-wiener.pdf -http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2474/13/122

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