You are placing a central venous catheter in a 44-year-old patient with unknown identity found down in the street. The patient is intubated and sedated. After multiple attempts to cannulate the vein, you accidentally stick your finger with the finder needle. You remove your glove and see that your finger is bleeding.
What should you do next?A. Wash your finger with soap and water for 2 minutes, then call your hospital’s infection control, infectious diseases consult, or emergency medicine needlestick response team for further assistance
Correct Answer: A
Soap and water should be used to wash the injured body part after a needlestick injury. The efficacy of chlorhexidine cleansing is not known. The patient on whom the procedure was being performed should be tested for HIV and hepatitis, but only after consent has been obtained from the patient. Because this patient is intubated and sedated, consent for testing cannot currently be obtained, and it is important to discuss postexposure prophylaxis against transmissible infections with your hospital’s needlestick team as soon as possible after a needlestick or mucosal exposure occurs.