Saturday, March 31, 2012

When Your Patient Hates You

I was under the impression while in nursing school that your patients will generally appreciate you to some extent, but I have unfortunately learned the hard way that this is definitely not always the case.
I hate to stereotype people but I have found that there are some patient populations who share certain characteristics: burn patients are often drunks and/or drug addicts, transplant patients are nice but can be very anal, and gun shot victims are usually jerks.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Least Favorite Words

The four words I absolutely dread hearing come from the mouth of a patient are (in this particular order):
It could just be an anxiety attack or pain from an injury (shoulder or rib fractures to name a couple) but it also might be a freakin' heart attack, y'all. It's happened to me a few times already, and what follows that evil utterance is a barrage of tests which include:
1. EKG (which you hook up in a nonchalant manner to give your patient the impression that you do this all the time at 3:00 am)
2. Troponin labs (which will then have to be repeated every few hours, oh and it's fun to draw someone's blood under stressful circumstances when you're a new nurse and not a great phlebotomist so far)
3. Chest x-ray (also totally normal at 3:00 am)
4. You peeing your pants a little because you're afraid they actually are having a heart attack and that they just might code on you (#4 does not require an order from a doctor).

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Let Me Help You Help Yourself...

Why do I get the sneaking suspicion that my patients sometimes think I am out to GET THEM? I felt like the mother of three very dysfunctional children today who were all convinced I was being paid mega bucks to inflict pain and suffering upon them (ah HA! ...the sadistic nurse! buuwahahaha!!).

When hospitalized and you are encourage you to do something like... walk, deep breath, remain NPO ... it's generally for a good reason: i.e. to prevent you from getting pneumonia, help you poop, help you not barf all over yourself (and myself, I aint gonna lie).

I hope I'm not crossing the insensitive tough love nurse line here but, I'm not here for my health y'all, I'm here for yours! Smooches.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Top O' the Morning!

Who knew there were bars that opened at 8:30am catering to medical professionals and professional alcoholics? I had my first experience at such an establishment the other morning, and while there were definitely other nurses bellying up to the bar, there were also a few old and not-so-old men coming in for a good ol' shot and a pint to start the day out right. I never thought I could stomach a drink that early in the morning but really, when you're working nights, your world is upside down and inside out and your morning suddenly becomes the right time for a night cap.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

"This Side Back"

It's hard enough not accidentally showing your crack when you've got your gown on the right way and you're behaving yourself, let alone when your a large female wearing it backwards, ranting and raving at the top of your lungs at 3 o'clock in the morning outside your hospital room. If you find yourself in this situation, take a 15-second break from abusing the nurses and doctors who are (trying to) take care of you and take a look down your front side (and maybe just say screw it and put a shirt on).