Aug 25, 2016
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I will preface this by saying I was very tired as this was my first overnight shift as a student. But, this is not my first time scrubbing into surgery and I should know better. Because I am an idiot, I scrubbed in and proceeded to touch my face. I then freaked out and touched a scrub brush in the sink and washed my hands with soap. I still scrubbed in (I know). I held a retractor for about 5 min before I felt like I was going to pass out anyway, so I scrubbed out. I am just wondering if I should say something. I feel miserable about it. I don't have a good excuse as to why I just didn't scrub again.

I just don't want this to come back and haunt me later. Will they ever know? Should I just say "hey on that last case I washed my hands instead of scrubbing after I touched my face, please let me know if there are any issues?" I feel so guilty.
 
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SLUser11

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I will preface this by saying I was very tired as this was my first overnight shift as a student. But, this is not my first time scrubbing into surgery and I should know better. Because I am an idiot, I scrubbed in and proceeded to touch my face. I then freaked out and touched a scrub brush in the sink and washed my hands with soap. I still scrubbed in (I know). I held a retractor for about 5 min before I felt like I was going to pass out anyway, so I scrubbed out. I am just wondering if I should say something. I feel miserable about it. I don't have a good excuse as to why I just didn't scrub again.

I just don't want this to come back and haunt me later. Will they ever know? Should I just say "hey on that last case I washed my hands instead of scrubbing after I touched my face, please let me know if there are any issues?" I feel so guilty.
The problem is that they are likely to discover your mistake during the autopsy. There's really no way out of this. I suggest you get a good lawyer.
 

frosted2

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In my limited experience shadowing and teching in the OR, that scrub nurse will rip you a new one if you so much as breathe in the wrong direction :blackeye:
 
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VisionaryTics

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Seriously though, not a big deal. You didn't kill the patient. Depending on the case, your "dirty" hand may have been the cleanest thing in the field.

Just don't do it again. And if anyone (it's always an overzealous scrub nurse) yells out "You're contaminated!" at any point in the case, don't argue, just go rescrub.
 
OP
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Aug 25, 2016
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2
Seriously though, not a big deal. You didn't kill the patient. Depending on the case, your "dirty" hand may have been the cleanest thing in the field.

Just don't do it again. And if anyone (it's always an overzealous scrub nurse) yells out "You're contaminated!" at any point in the case, don't argue, just go rescrub.
Haha I know it's not a big deal, but I ended up telling her anyway because I felt bad. I'm a noob, whatever. She was like, "uhh if this was before you out you're gloves on it's really not anything to worry about..." I haven't really messed up in the OR before so I overreacted for sure. Worst case, she thinks of me as a moron.
 
Jun 22, 2015
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I will preface this by saying I was very tired as this was my first overnight shift as a student. But, this is not my first time scrubbing into surgery and I should know better. Because I am an idiot, I scrubbed in and proceeded to touch my face. I then freaked out and touched a scrub brush in the sink and washed my hands with soap. I still scrubbed in (I know). I held a retractor for about 5 min before I felt like I was going to pass out anyway, so I scrubbed out. I am just wondering if I should say something. I feel miserable about it. I don't have a good excuse as to why I just didn't scrub again.

I just don't want this to come back and haunt me later. Will they ever know? Should I just say "hey on that last case I washed my hands instead of scrubbing after I touched my face, please let me know if there are any issues?" I feel so guilty.
I guess I only think its even a minor deal because you didn't just take the time to scrub knowing you are contaminated. It doesn't take that long to do it again and most places have waterless scrubs that take no time at all. Cutting corners is no bueno, but you seem pretty worked up about it so I doubt you'll do it again.
 
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vhawk

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I guess I only think its even a minor deal because you didn't just take the time to scrub knowing you are contaminated. It doesn't take that long to do it again and most places have waterless scrubs that take no time at all. Cutting corners is no bueno, but you seem pretty worked up about it so I doubt you'll do it again.
Yeah this is the biggest issue honestly. I mean I also wouldn't have rescrubbed probably but that's because scrubbing is basically a voodoo ritual and we wear gloves for a reason. But I KNOW that. The OP doesnt, and for all he knows he could be harming this patient. It's a little worrisome that he sort of just panicked and did it anyway.
 

ProfMD

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How much more did you soap? The soap kills the bacteria. The scrub brush gets off dirt and dead skin cells. No need to scrub brush again - soaping again is likely sufficient.

That being said, you were gloved. No harm done on all likelihood.