container or returning it to its storage place. If the drug is handed to another person
(such as the scrub or doctor), then that person should be shown the label also. The
specialist is never to use a drug that has changed color or one from an unmarked or
poorly labeled container.
c. Pouring the Excessive Amount of Drug. If the specialist pours or
withdraws an excessive amount of a drug, he is to discard the excess drug. He is not to
return it to the supply container.
d. Drugs for Use Within the Operative Area. The label of a drug prepared for
use within the operative area is to be checked by two persons. In addition, the
specialist states the name of the drug when handing it to the surgeon.
e. Use of Cocaine. Cocaine must be kept in a locked place and must be
accounted for, since it is classed as a narcotic agent. Cocaine is a highly toxic drug,
and therefore, the following precautions should be observed in its use.
(1) Cocaine solution should be stored in a dark bottle away from light and
never for duration longer than 2 weeks. The length of storage time will depend upon the
surgeon. Many medical officers prefer a freshly made solution each time it is used for
Cocaine is never to be injected. It is used for topical anesthesia only.
(3) Dosage should be checked carefully. Cocaine is supplied in ampoules
containing either 3.5 g or 0.5 g of the drug and is usually used in solutions of two, four,
and ten percent.
(4) Personnel who prepare cocaine solution for use on a patient must be
especially careful to ensure that they make no error in the identification of this drug. To
assist with the accurate identification of the drug, pharmacy personnel may place a
coloring agent into cocaine solution.
3-13. ADMINISTRATION OF BLOOD
Certain safety precautions must be observed when administering blood to a
patient to help prevent errors and reactions. The circulating specialist usually assists
with the administration of blood.
a. Unless ordered otherwise, the blood is to be kept refrigerated until it is to be