Cryostat knives

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From:Vinnie Della Speranza <>
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in the aftermath of an employee injury, our safety officer is insisting that we remove cryostat knives at the end of the shift (leaving no blade in the cyrostat over night) and change blades in between patients. She claims that failure to do so would be a violation of OSHA's requirements for safe work practices. The employee nicked her thumb while tidying up the interior of one of our units.

We commonly juggle frozen section specimens from more than one patient simulataneously. We are a busy facility with a very large transplant program. It is not uncommon for pathologists to be called to do frozens at odd hours, hence the need for a cold knife that is ready to go at all times.

I would like to hear your thoughts on this matter and from facilities who might be using practices similar to that being asked of us. Thanks


Vinnie Della Speranza
Manager for Anatomic Pathology Services
Medical University of South Carolina
165 Ashley Avenue
Suite 309
Charleston, SC  29425
ph:  (843) 792-6353
fax: (843) 792-8974

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