Saturday, August 14, 2021

An Old Memoria

I don't have a big problem with needles. I don't especially like them, but I don't lose my mind when I get an injection or have to have blood drawn. No biggie.

But I know people who just can't abide needles. They either decide not to get things that are delivered by shot, or faint during the shot, or kick out at the last second.

And every time that happens, I think about "the gun," which I recall being used at least into the mid-1980s (at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego). It delivered medication (usually, in my experience, vaccines) via a near-instantaneous high-pressure stream of liquid through the skin instead of the doctor or nurse having to dig around in the patient with a needle.

In recent years, I've often wondered whatever happened to "the gun," but never bothered to actually look into it until just now. The Wikipedia explanation: "[T]he World Health Organization no longer recommends jet injectors for vaccination due to risks of disease transmission," due to splash-back, fluid suck-back, and retrograde flow.

The article hints that "jet injectors" are still being used in some applications, and still being worked to get them safe for more general use. I think that would be a good thing, not just for people who hate needles, but for practitioners who have to deliver lots of shots in a day and would probably save a good minute or two per shot.

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