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Halloween incident highlights risks of getting poked by medical needles

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Tonight we continue to track the investigation into how a medical needle got into a trick-or-treater's bag and ended up poking her.

The child's mother told us this incident has frightened her whole family.

So just how dangerous can these needles be?

It seems like one of those untraceable myths: razors, injections, and needles found in Halloween candy.

But it became a reality for a few this Halloween with one incident in Indiana, another in Illinois, and one here in Winchester, KY.

"I never thought that in a million years that going through this neighborhood and trick-or-treating that this would end up happening," said the mother of the 8-year-old poked with a needle in Winchester.

But is it enough to scare off trick-or-treaters? The Winchester mother of the 8-year-old girl who was poked by a needle says it is.

"She's terrified to go, and I'd say go to a church or the hospital next time. Never go door-to-door because you just never know," said the Winchester mother.

Although doctors say taking precaution and seeing a doctor is smart, the chances of actually contracting some kind of illness or disease from a needle are less than one percent according to local doctors.

"It is important that if a child gets stuck to monitor that over time, especially if they can't find the person or the source for the needle, to test as well to know for sure," said Ryan Stanton, M.D., in the UK Hospital's Emergency Room.

Of course, finding a foreign object in your child's trick-or-treat bag is more than alarming, but doctors say parents should not let it ruin a fun night for their little ghosts and goblins.

"Not something for the general public I'd say should keep you up at night. It's an incredibly small risk and there are a lot more things in this world that are dangerous," said Stanton, M.D.

Doctors tell us it's possible to contract HIV, hepatitis C, and hepatitis B from needles. Children are vaccinated for hepatitis B when they enter school.


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