A Toutle-area family’s Christmas was ruined Wednesday when their son was stabbed by a syringe inside a sweatshirt he received for Christmas.
The family had opened all its gifts, and Nanette Snyder’s 16-year-old son was wearing the hoody sweatshirt she’d bought him from the Seventh Avenue Walmart in Longview, when the incident occurred. About 1 p.m. she asked him to stand up so she could see how it looked. He stuck his hand in the front pocket and said “ow,” Snyder recalled.
What followed next was a parent’s worst nightmare, she said.
Her son pulled his hand out the pocket and a syringe was still stuck in his finger, the boy’s stepfather, Tom Basye, said Thursday. Another syringe also was found in the pocket, and both appear to have been used. One still had blood on the needle.
“I was just numb,” Snyder said.
“Just utter shock,” Basye said.
She took her son (she is not naming him publicly) to the emergency department at St. John Medical Center in Longview for HIV and hepatitis blood tests. As of late Thursday afternoon, the family still didn’t have the initial test results. Even if the first round of tests are negative, they’ll be anxious for most of next year, because the boy will need to be tested again at six weeks, 12 weeks and six months, Snyder said.
According to the federal Centers for Disease Control, it’s possible to contract HIV or Hepatitis from a single needle stick, but it’s extremely rare. The risk for HIV transmission from an infected needle stick is 0.3 percent. The risk is 1.8 percent for Hepatitis C and between 6 and 30 percent for Hepatitis B.