What to do after a needlestick injury

Treatment of a needlestick injury

  • encourage bleeding from the puncture site but do not squeeze the wound excessively to make it bleed, wash with soap and running water, do not scrub the area. Do not suck the wound
  • go immediately to the nearest accident and emergency department, or to your occupational health service; do not delay as urgent assessment and treatment may be required.
  • report the incident to your manager and fill out your works accident book or complete a critical event audit it there is one in place but do not delay in going to the hospital; reports Can be completed later.

What information will I need to give?

You may be asked for all or some of the following information:

Is it a deep or surface puncture? If the puncture was caused by a needle, what gauge was the needle? Was the needle solid (suturing) or hollow? Could you see blood or bloody material on the surface of the needle or scalpel? Was the device previously in contact with the patient’s body fluids? If blood was injected into you, how much? Were you wearing protective gloves?

Information about any medical conditions, medications and allergies–Have you been exposed to HIV before? If so, when? How? Are you pregnant? Are you breast-feeding? Are you sexually active?

Whether you will agree to testing– Will you agree to confidential testing in order to document seroconversion (in the rare event of HIV transmission by occupational exposure)?

Follow up to sharps and needle stick injury treatment

Ensure adequate follow up of both injured party and source if known. The injured party will require early involvement by the Occupation Health service. They may need specific advice about having to take sick leave if medication is required, and the possible requirement for psychological support.

PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis) is usually given where there is a high-risk exposure to HIV and treatment should be started as soon as possible after the injury and within 72 hours at the most. The treatment course is usually in the region of four weeks and possible side-effects include nausea, diarrhoea, dizziness and headaches.

This information is not intended to replace professional medical advice and this should be sought as soon as possible after the event.

If you have had a needlestick injury you are entitled to claim compensation and damages for the injury and stress, to find out how we can help you claim the compensation you deserve call me, Mike Massen on 0113 224 7804 or email me at enquiry@cohencramerpi.co.uk 

We can deal with your claim on a ‘No Win-No Fee’ basis so that if your claim fails you won’t pay us a penny for the work we have done on your behalf.

For the Quality Legal Service You Deserve.