I am scared- anyone with medical advice/opinion on this please!! - Mothering Forums

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Old 08-12-2011, 02:28 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My pediatrician (whom I am going to switch from) gave my baby a vaccine a while ago but it still worries me - what he did was he took off the cap from the vaccine case/vial with his MOUTH and then pulled out the vaccine and gave it to my child.   He is gay or bisexual I know this for sure and really am concerned: could any diseases that he might have been transferred to the baby from doing this?    Thanks   and PS as a side note: in this practice him and the staff stick the needles into the examination room cushion where the kids lie/sit  after they give vacccines.   Is there risk of getting an diseases from this?   ( Note:my child has not been vaccinated for Hep B which they guy may or maynot have but who knows what he might have?)

 

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Old 08-12-2011, 07:08 PM
 
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Okay, well, first, let me say that IMO it is completely irrelevant whether he is gay or bi or not. 

 

But second, while I don't think that there is a high likelihood that a child would contract a disease from those practices, they do sound inappropriate.  I'd suggest contacting your local department of health and reporting. 

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Old 08-12-2011, 07:43 PM
 
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Okay, well, first, let me say that IMO it is completely irrelevant whether he is gay or bi or not. 

 

But second, while I don't think that there is a high likelihood that a child would contract a disease from those practices, they do sound inappropriate.  I'd suggest contacting your local department of health and reporting. 


Totally agree with this. Why would he stick cushions with a used syringe? Very weird!

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Old 08-12-2011, 08:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I mentioned the sexuality because those groups are known to be at higher risk for certain disesases for eg Hep B

I think the practice does this outta convenience, they eventually dispose of them it's jsut at the moment they do that.

Should I be worried where I need to get my child tested for disease? thanks for your replies!!

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Old 08-12-2011, 08:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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also can I be anonymous if resporting to the dept of health?

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Old 08-13-2011, 02:01 AM
 
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The chance of your child getting a disease such as Hep B from such a practice is extremely low. I would be more worried about contamination from oral bacteria causing an infection at the injection site. You don't mention how long ago your child had the vaccine but, if there are no signs of infection within a few days then it's probably not going to happen.

 

It is even less likely that anyone would get any type of infection from the couch cushion. They would pretty much have to have an open wound in direct contact with the contaminated cushion within minutes of the needle being removed.

 

All that said, both these things are EXTREMELY poor practice. Used sharps should be placed immediately into a sharps container placed as close as possible to the point of use. In a doctors surgery there is no reason why the sharps container can't be within arms reach of where you're giving the injection.

 

I would write to the practice manager in the first instance but, if you knew that this was an ingrained, cultural practice then I would go higher.


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Old 08-13-2011, 06:37 AM
 
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UMMM is this a joke?


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Old 08-13-2011, 03:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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no it is not a joke this really occured.   where would I go to go "higher"?   Thanks

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Old 08-13-2011, 03:21 PM
 
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I don't think I have ever heard of anything that ridiculous safety precaution-wise. Are you in the US? go to OSHA.gov and file a complaint, they are in charge of medical safety precautions etc.


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Old 08-13-2011, 08:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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just curious what do you think would really be accomplished by a complaint? 

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Old 08-13-2011, 08:32 PM
 
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Originally Posted by AnnieMaxwell View Post

just curious what do you think would really be accomplished by a complaint? 


 

Maybe someone will look into it?  Maybe not - but if you do not complain there is no possibility.  Do it in writing and ask to for a response.

 

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Old 08-14-2011, 12:05 AM
 
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Okay, I have seen folks bite the needle cap off of a syringe but never the cap off of a vial. If you're biting just the syringe cap, your mouth is not close enough to contaminate the medicine but it is still gross in my opinion.Did he at least swab the top of the vial with alcohol?  Just for future reference you can refuse treatment if you see something that disturbs ya- for instance, if the Dr walks in and starts to take off your bandage without washing his hands first- stop him.

 

Back in the ancient days before safety needles some of us would stick a used needle in a mattress while we finished up what we had to get done with the patient. If you were starting an IV you had to have two hands free to connect the tubing and tape up the site- you couldn't go to the needle box on the wall and if you just put the used needle on a table someone could get stuck accidentally. Nowadays all our injection needles have little safety devices that recap the needle after use so we don't stick them in furniture anymore.If you report this guy, maybe he will not be doing that to anyone else's kids. OSHA I guess would also be able to tell if there is something that needs to be done to find out if any patients were potentially harmed and if so, arrange to get people tested.


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Old 08-14-2011, 01:28 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you for your reply.  It guess it was a syringe cap - my terminology is not that accurate as I am not a medical person so I guess it wasn't a vial? not sure what the difference was but it was a needle that was in what (from what I remember-it was a while ago) looked like a long probably plastic or glass holder that the needle was in - I am almost positive that the needles are "prepared" in another room and then the nurse or doctor give the injection. While I am glad to hear that people are saying that there shouldn't be any cuase to worry about any transmission of any disease, if OSHA were to have people get tested somehow, what and how could you test for so many possible diseases (that the guy might have?)  Should I be so worried as to get mychild tested for any/all possibilities? Thanks so much.

Interesting that you have experience with putting the needles in a cushion but in this case there was no IV involved- was just a baby receiving a vaccination.

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Old 08-14-2011, 01:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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oh and I don't recall him at all swabbing anything with alcohol.  this place also doesnt use gloves for anything-checkups, etc and some pediatricians do-  is the glove thing like 50-50 do and don't use them?

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Old 08-14-2011, 02:16 PM
 
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Ok, I am a health care provider, and while it sounds like this practice is not observing universal precautions, I agree with the poster above who said that the greatest risk from what you have described is a local infection at the injection site. If the syringes were prepared in another room, there is no knowing whether the top of the vial was swabbed before the vaccine was drawn up. They should have swabbed your little one's skin before the injection, though. I am wondering if your ped is really old?? All of what you described used to be common practice.

 

Honestly, most of what you described is putting the staff at the medical office more at risk than the patients. Not using gloves and handling used needles increase their risk of exposure to blood borne pathogens. Reporting the situation to OSHA would be for their protection as well as yours. 

 


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Old 08-14-2011, 06:06 PM
 
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Ok, so a vial is a little bottle, usually glass, sometimes plastic, that the medication is stored in. Some vaccines come in vials but some come prepackaged in the syringe already. If he was just pulling the needle cap off with his teeth then the risk of infection is even lower, although it is still very poor practice and he shouldn't have done it.

 

I'm not surprised that he didn't swab your child's skin, it is no longer recommended practice unless the skin is visibly dirty. Unless you wait until the alcohol dries completely (and most people don't) then it can cause irritation when it gets into the needle track. The risk of infection from native skin flora is very low.

 

As far as wearing gloves, it really depends what they're doing. When you say "check-ups", what does that involve? If it's just listening to their heart and lungs etc then there is no need for gloves. The guideline is that you wear gloves for anything where you may come in contact with body fluids and/or mucous membranes.

 

Handwashing should be done before and after any examination though, regardless of whether gloves are worn or not.


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Old 08-14-2011, 07:27 PM
 
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You definitely do not need to worry about getting your child tested for any diseases. Even if the doc did have hep B and HIV, those are not generally transmitted by saliva so the chances of transmission are astronomically low, even if he had an open sore in his mouth (gross, sorry!). And really, his sexuality is completely irrelevent. 

 

The practices you describe do seem a little unprofessional, though. 

 

I didn't know that about the alcohol swabs! I know they have been proven to be fairly ineffective at cleaning before injections, but I wasn't aware that people were actually beginning to abandon the practice.


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Old 08-15-2011, 06:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks everyone.  honestly I didn't understand the question about the swwabbing of the skin with alchol. It was quite a while ago and the swabing may have been done (hard for me to remember this one way or other  but possible it was done) what stands out so firmly in my mind was the other stuff I described.

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Old 08-15-2011, 11:14 AM
 
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Hi AnnieMaxwell, I know some of this was covered by the pps but I had to put in my $0.02. 

 

Your child was not put at harm by your pediatrician's actions.  Your pediatrician is not taking every precaution to protect himself, and he's going by some unusual guidelines- I'm not surprised that you were worried sick.  Maybe you should switch ped's.  But first you should talk to the practice- talk to the doctor, talk to the office manager, explain your concerns.  Tell them how uncomfortable it made you and how worried you were. In an ideal world, you would have spoken up at the time- say, "Why did you stick that needle in the cushion?" or, "Is opening the vial with your mouth safe?"  You should always, always, always feel free to express concern, ask questions or say "I don't understand [X, Y or Z]."  Doctors need feedback too!

 

The big concern here is that if he's easygoing in these areas, there's the possibility that he's lax in others; if he is from another country, or an older ped, chances are good that this is just the way he's always done it, though.  Definitely this is a case for talking to him about, and bring in the office manager too.  They need to know about your concerns.

 

Good luck!  May your baby stay healthy and well!

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Old 08-15-2011, 03:07 PM
 
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What everyone else said. And, I don't think the gay is contagious. Your child will be fine.


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Old 09-04-2011, 04:29 PM
 
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I'm a type I diabetic and I use syringes all the time.  Sometimes I pull the top off with my mouth.  I can't imagine how that could affect the recipient of the shot.  If it had been the vial of medicine, then I would think he could have left saliva on the pad that you stick with the needle and draw from.  But unless he took the cap out of his mouth and wiped it on the needle, I don't see an issue here at all.  When I pull the cap off with my mouth, I am pretty darned sure the needle is still as sterile as it would have been if I had used my fingers.  


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