Tips for Safe Use of Insect Repellent Containing DEET

Vol. 10, No. 2
June, 2000

  • Longer-Lasting Implants Used for Total Hip Replacement

  • Brachytherapy Service Expands to New Island Hospital
    Brachytherapy Expertise Benefits Patients at Winthrop�s Affiliate

  • New Technology Reduces Pain of Tonsillectomies

  • Tips for Safe Use of Insect Repellent Containing DEET

  • Ribbon Cutting Ceremony for Six-Bed Vascular Stepdown Unit

  • Children�s Health Services Program:
    A Wealth of Information and Referrals

  • Pediatricians on Medical Mission to El Salvador

  • Stereotactic Technology System Expands the Parameters of �What is Operable�

  • Stroke Team Offers the Latest Treatments

  • Team Provides New Seizure Control Procedure for Children

  • MRI Unit Receives Three-Year Accreditation from the American College of Radiology

  • Emergency Department Receives Adelphi University Award

  • Ultra-fast, Multi-slice CT Scanner Installed in Radiology Department

  • Installation of Winthrop�s Auxiliary Officers

  • Lita Reilly Elected Auxilian of the Year

  • Annual Junior Volunteer Awards Ceremony

  • Focus on Home Care:
    Care without Compromise Comes Home

  • In the Swing of Things

  • Child Life Program Expands Hours and Services

  • Copyright

    Back to Publications

  • Until last year, insect bites were just a minor summertime annoyance. Now, they are thought to be the transmitters of encephalitis.

    The New York State Department of Health points to an association between a common house mosquito, Culex pipiens, and West Nile Virus, which can cause encephalitis. Children, older adults, and individuals with weakened immune systems are most at risk.

    Long Islanders commonly turn to insect repellents to reduce their risk. Many of these products contain DEET - the chemical N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide. DEET offers a measure of protection against mosquitoes and tics. The Long Island Regional Poison Control Center, headquartered at Winthrop, and the Hospital�s Infection Control Section, remind Long Islanders that special precautions must be taken when using insect repellents, especially on children.

    Products containing DEET have been occasionally associated with some health problems, including skin reactions. Rashes, swelling, itching, eye irritation, and less frequently, slurred speech, confusion, and seizures are all possible side effects. Therefore, frequent application and saturation with insect repellent are not advised.

    Products containing DEET should never be applied directly to the faces and hands of children. Importantly, children should not be allowed to apply products containing DEET by themselves. Adults should apply DEET to a cloth or paper towel, and then put it on the child, avoiding the face and hands. The adult should wash his hands immediately afterwards. Skin and clothing treated with DEET should be washed upon returning indoors.

    According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, repellents used on children should contain no more than 10 percent DEET. If a child appears to have an adverse reaction to a repellent containing DEET, wash the affected area immediately and contact your physician or the Long Island Regional Poison Control Center at (516) 542-2323. Remember, insect repellents, and all medications, should be stored out of the reach of children.

    DEET is only one way to reduce the risk of mosquito bites. Exercise simple precautions such as wearing long pants, hats, and long sleeved garments outdoors. Keep away from areas with tall grass and shrubbery, which provide homes for adult mosquitoes. Above all, drain all containers and receptacles in which rainwater may collect and stagnate. These are the breeding grounds for new generations of mosquitoes.

    For further information, call Winthrop�s Infection Control Section, part of the Institute for Specialty Care, at (516) 663-2724.

    Ribbon Cutting Ceremony for Six-Bed Vascular Stepdown Unit

    Cutting the ribbon, L - R, were George L. Hines, MD, Chief, Division of Vascular Surgery; Daniel P. Walsh, Winthrop�s President and Chief Executive Officer; Valerie Terzano, BSN, MSN, CNA, Vice President - Nursing; James S. Flaherty, Vice President - Administration; Karin Gentile, RN, Nurse Manager; Joan Marchiselli, RN, BSN, MSN, Administrative Manager, Patient Care Services/Surgery; Daniel Abbruzzese, Director of Engineering; Dennis W. Sheridan, MBA, Administrative Director, Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery; and Richard A. Newhouse, Jr., Chairman, Winthrop�s Board of Directors.
    A six-bed, fully monitored vascular stepdown unit opened on Winthrop�s 3 Main Unit, part of the Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery. The unit provides care to patients who have undergone carotid artery surgery, arterial bypass surgery, and surgery for aortic aneurysms. Most patients stay in the stepdown unit anywhere from 24-48 hours to three to four days after surgery, before being transferred to a medical/surgical bed.

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