RE: Safety of employees handling paraffin embedded tissue.
I don't use gloves when sectioning the regular stuff. I do only when we have
a prion disease project such as Chronic Wasting Disease or scrapie. As for
Hepatitis C... I work with Hepatitis B infected mice and have never had any
problem. 10% formalin kills hepatitis viruses and the alcohols in the
processing will add a second measure of protection (heptitis viruses are
easily killed with 70% ETOH) and so long as there is no place within the
tissue that was NOT fixed/processed, I can't imagine there would be anything
infectious for a histotech to worry about. Did this girl cut her finger while
cutting this tissue? I HAVE heard of one histologist getting hepatitis (don't
recall which strain) while cutting some poorly fixed/processed tissues.
Apparently the tissues was pretty gooey in the block. She cut herself and
that was that, but the key words are "poorly fixed/processed tissues."
>===== Original Message From "Bartlett, Jeanine" <firstname.lastname@example.org> =====
>I do not use gloves when embedding or sectioning, but most of the other
>techs in my lab do. With the sectioning I was told it was more to keep
>cornified cells from making their way onto the slides or into the water bath
>than for safety reasons. I have not heard of anyone contracting an illness
>from not wearing gloves while embedding or sectioning.
>Jeanine Bartlett, HT(ASCP)
>Centers for Disease Control
>Infectious Disease Pathology Activity
>Atlanta, GA 30333
>From: ScubaD100@aol.com [mailto:ScubaD100@aol.com]
>Sent: Tuesday, May 29, 2001 11:18 PM
>Subject: Safety of employees handling paraffin embedded tissue.
>I have recently heard of a previous employee of a pathology laboratory suing
>for being exposed to and contracting Hepatitis C from handling the paraffin
>blocks. I have never seen anybody wearing gloves during the embedding and
>microtomy of properly fixed tissue sections. Has anybody else heard of any
>similar circumstances and if so, should we all wear gloves during embedding
>and sectioning. I know if I tried to cut tissue sections with gloves on, I
>may not be exposed to Hepatitis C, but I would probably be looking for
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