View Full Version : What's your favorite nursing task that others might find... objectional? :)


geenaRN
01-10-2008, 12:25 PM
What do you just looooooove to do that others would cringe at? GuitarGirl RN (http://guitargirlrn.blogspot.com/2007/12/yes-i-am-one-of-those-nurses.html) wrote a very interesting post about helping to lance a cyst in the ER.

My favorite thing to do is drain stomach contents. One of my most memorable moments as a nurse is when I put an NG down someone that was in a lot of pain and nauseated.... very uncomfortable.

I got back a liter and a half of bile. How does anyone fit a liter and a half of bile into their digestive tract and not throw up? Anyway, his relief was practically palpable and he was actually thanking me profusely for putting a plastic tube up his nose. Never been thanked for THAT before, and haven't since, either.

Anyway, it was most satisfying. I mentioned this to another nurse recently and she cringed and said that was gross. No way!!

Give me an NG, a tummy full of junk, and a cath-tip syringe any day and I'm a happy RN :)

LesleyJoy
01-10-2008, 12:43 PM
Geena,

When I worked for an ambulance service the task I found most satisfying was the successful placement of an endotracheal tube. I was a happy camper if I had an patient with an airway (and who was perfusing, of course! :whistle: )

The activity that bring me the most satisfaction as a House Sup is defusing volatile situations. A close second is addressing the multifaceted issues that occur when resources are or threaten to become overwhelmed (ie, multiple and simultaneous critical ED patients secondary to fire, car wrecks, or local disasters).

Joy

Mother Jones, RN
01-10-2008, 01:37 PM
Wow, what a great question! I always liked packing deep abdominal wounds. It was the closest thing I could do that was akin to performing surgery. :nurse:

MJ :pepsi:

Marachne
01-10-2008, 02:09 PM
I really like preparing a body after a person dies. It feels like such a loving act to remove all those lines that they picked at, wash them gently, put some lotion on them, and a clean gown, prop their mouth closed, cover them with the "passage quilt" (a special quilt that stays on them until they are picked up, and then covers the bed for at least 24hrs in the room they were in), and then call the family in.

That said, I don't know if it's necessarily objectionable to other nurses.

geenaRN
01-10-2008, 03:36 PM
Wow... these are awesome answers. Definitely not a fan of diffusing volatile situations. I'm not particularly a fan of packing deep wounds or dealing with deceased bodies, either. In fact, if there is anyone at all available to go in with me to remove lines, wash the body and prepare it, I take them in with me.

There's just something about a body whose soul has left that I find creepy. And after hearing about reflexes and such, I'm always afraid one is going to do something and scare 10 years off of my life.

Anyway, Marachne, I'm interested in hearing more about this "passage quilt." What do you do with the quilt once it's done the 24 hours on the bed? Is it just one quilt? Who made it? Why was that tradition started?

You can start new thread if you want so as to not derail this one.

Julie
01-10-2008, 03:53 PM
Its a while since I have done this, but there is something about passing a urethral catheter and relieving someone of a couple of litres of pain that they have suffered for hours.

Mother Jones, RN
01-10-2008, 04:41 PM
I think that people outside of the nursing profession might think that we are strange birds. I don't think that we are strange; I think that we are unique! :party:


MJ :pepsi:

KimRN
01-12-2008, 05:46 PM
Its a while since I have done this, but there is something about passing a urethral catheter and relieving someone of a couple of litres of pain that they have suffered for hours.

Julie, I was going to say the same thing! Urinary retention is horribly painful and I will be inserting a catheter before the patient even sees the doc in the ER.

You want a grateful patient? Drain a balloon sized bladder!

Instant gratification for the patient and the nurse! :beer:

Julie
01-12-2008, 08:40 PM
Great minds Kim!
:dancing:

MyOwnWoman
01-13-2008, 12:34 PM
Ok, I don't even know how to put into words what I like because it's so bizaree that you will all think I've gone mad. So, I'll just say it outright. I like to go with the doctor to tell the family when one of their loved ones have died. When the doctor leaves, I remain behind and try to answer all questions they have. I like giving them support and allowing them to vent. After talking, I ask them if they would like to see their loved one and if they do, I take them to the room (with smelling salts in hand) and give them some time to say goodbye. I don't know why, but this part of nursing gives me some of the greatest satisfaction. It makes me feel like a part of the family and that the patient was a person that was loved.

Marachne
01-13-2008, 10:36 PM
Ok, I don't even know how to put into words what I like because it's so bizaree that you will all think I've gone mad. So, I'll just say it outright. I like to go with the doctor to tell the family when one of their loved ones have died. When the doctor leaves, I remain behind and try to answer all questions they have. I like giving them support and allowing them to vent. After talking, I ask them if they would like to see their loved one and if they do, I take them to the room (with smelling salts in hand) and give them some time to say goodbye. I don't know why, but this part of nursing gives me some of the greatest satisfaction. It makes me feel like a part of the family and that the patient was a person that was loved.

Doesn't sound bizarre to me, sounds like an opportunity to provide compassionate heartfull care, and to recognize that your patient is not a person in isolation but part of a greater whole, who also deserve care and respect. wonderful!:highfive:

NurseSean
01-16-2008, 12:50 AM
I'm really starting to enjoy trach care *shrug*

I also love bed baths

I love making beds! My favorite motto is: if I have time to make beds, you know I'm having a great day!

PixelRN
01-18-2008, 12:59 PM
I can't believe that I am actually admitting this to you guys but I like going to the morgue. There's a guy there that looks like the butler from the Adam's Family and sometimes he sneaks up on you and scares you.

Does that make me a freak?

geenaRN
01-18-2008, 08:49 PM
Does that make me a freak?

Yeeeeeeeeah, kind of. :ahhhhh:

amandatlc1
01-19-2008, 04:19 AM
have you tried using lidocaine through neb prior to NGT? It worked just great.

KimRN
01-22-2008, 10:57 AM
I can't believe that I am actually admitting this to you guys but I like going to the morgue. There's a guy there that looks like the butler from the Adam's Family and sometimes he sneaks up on you and scares you.

Does that make me a freak?

:creep:

:whistle:

Mother Jones, RN
01-22-2008, 03:57 PM
I can't believe that I am actually admitting this to you guys but I like going to the morgue. There's a guy there that looks like the butler from the Adam's Family and sometimes he sneaks up on you and scares you.

Does that make me a freak?


OMG! Creepy, in a funny kind of way. :eek:

MJ :pepsi:

P/J
01-23-2008, 01:14 AM
Packing wounds is my fav. Getting in there with forceps making sue all the sinuses are packed properly. The more gauze it takes the better. Got 3 Vag packs into a lady's back once. It's also fun to unpack them; you never know how much gauze is going to come out, it's like that magic trick with scarves. Haven't passed NG or IDC on real people yet, and I don't really like the idea as we can only do females without further training.

KimRN
01-23-2008, 11:16 PM
have you tried using lidocaine through neb prior to NGT? It worked just great.

Amanda - how do you do the lido via neb? I usually have the patient "snort" (for lack of a better word) 2% Lido jelly into the nostril and it numbs all the way back to the throat.

Never heard of the neb route!

geenaRN
01-24-2008, 03:41 PM
Wow. I'd be more uncomfortable snorting jelly than I would having the tube down. Sometimes I lube the tube with Lidocaine jelly and go slowly.

Ok, now that I think about it, that probably doesn't work well in terms of numbing the area.

KimRN
01-24-2008, 06:06 PM
Wow. I'd be more uncomfortable snorting jelly than I would having the tube down. Sometimes I lube the tube with Lidocaine jelly and go slowly.

Ok, now that I think about it, that probably doesn't work well in terms of numbing the area.

I learned the snort trick from an ER doctor and it's amazing how well it works. The nose is the worst part. Once it gets to the back of the throat and the pt swallows, it's home free! :nurse:

Elocin22
01-29-2008, 01:27 AM
I get some pleasure out of packing wounds. I especially like to take a particular co-worker who has developed an extreme sensitivity to wounds, just to see how white he gets.

My other favorite thing to do is to clean out ears and between toes. I get excited when I see a pt w/ big ol' ear goobers or nasty inner-toe funk. (I know, I know... It's pleasing in a vomit inducing way.) It's almost as satisfying as peeling tape or untangling IV lines.

P/J
01-29-2008, 05:43 AM
Ooooooo untangling IV lines, its like pealing glue off your hands, you just can't do it enough.:love:

Mother Jones, RN
01-29-2008, 12:06 PM
My other favorite thing to do is to clean out ears and between toes. I get excited when I see a pt w/ big ol' ear goobers or nasty inner-toe funk. (I know, I know... It's pleasing in a vomit inducing way.) It's almost as satisfying as peeling tape or untangling IV lines.

Eeewww! :spit-take:

geenaRN
01-29-2008, 04:54 PM
Ooooooo untangling IV lines, its like pealing glue off your hands, you just can't do it enough.:love:

If I could hire you as my personal IV untangler, I would!

LesleyJoy
01-30-2008, 12:44 AM
I have thought of something else. Because of my job title, I no longer have a patient load and so the 'tasks' of nursing are, for me, few and far between. There is one thing, however, that I do that is directly patient-related: I scribe for codes and trauma system entries. Really. I do! And I like it! I find great pleasure in watching the flow of care to ensure that everything that can be done is done - and in a timely manner, too! The first couple of times I gently asked for information startled the nurses and physicians. It was not long, however, before my value as "over-see-er" was publicly acknowledged and soon welcomed! Just thinking about the increased safety and efficiency my involvement has brought makes me smile.

Joy

Mother Jones, RN
01-30-2008, 10:27 AM
I have thought of something else. Because of my job title, I no longer have a patient load and so the 'tasks' of nursing are, for me, few and far between. There is one thing, however, that I do that is directly patient-related: I scribe for codes and trauma system entries. Really. I do! And I like it! I find great pleasure in watching the flow of care to ensure that everything that can be done is done - and in a timely manner, too! The first couple of times I gently asked for information startled the nurses and physicians. It was not long, however, before my value as "over-see-er" was publicly acknowledged and soon welcomed! Just thinking about the increased safety and efficiency my involvement has brought makes me smile.

Joy

This job would drive a lot of us crazy, but it's an important task that needs to be done. It's good that we all like doing different things. :star:

MJ :pepsi:

LesleyJoy
01-30-2008, 11:10 AM
...It's good that we all like doing different things. :star:

MJ :pepsi:

Yeah. I know I'm somewhat peculiar...

When I was in the field, I was never more pleased than when I was first on scene at a wreck or fire or some sort of catastrophe. The challenge of triaging and then emergent patient care was immensely satisfying. Of course, those times, along with the more routine calls, were soul-searing. Sometimes the memory of them wakes me up out of a sound sleep. Certain sights, smells or sounds will also call to mind those events of intense need. I can still see the toddler in the back of the smashed car. I can see other children crumpled in cars or limp by the side of the road. I can see a law enforcement officer crying behind a fire truck. I can see what was left of a man who died alone in his home. I can see the shocked looked on the faces of the first responders who cannot understand the volume of blood from a gunshot to the head. I can still hear the wail of an old man when he understood his wife of 63 years had died. I can see a firefighter holding the cast-off helmet of a fallen crew member, the smell of death on his turnouts. And the eyes of a mother looking at me over the body of her 9-year-old son haunt me to this day.

Now that I am too old to be in the field, and now that I am no longer interested in providing direct patient care in the hospital setting, I try to take care of those who work in the hospital and those who bring their patients or loved ones to this place.

Perhaps one day I shall write a book about the people I have been privileged to serve and the situations in which I have been involved.

Yeah. I am peculiar!

Joy

geenaRN
01-30-2008, 01:07 PM
I can still see the toddler in the back of the smashed car. I can see other children crumpled in cars or limp by the side of the road. I can see a law enforcement officer crying behind a fire truck. I can see what was left of a man who died alone in his home. I can see the shocked looked on the faces of the first responders who cannot understand the volume of blood from a gunshot to the head. I can still hear the wail of an old man when he understood his wife of 63 years had died. I can see a firefighter holding the cast-off helmet of a fallen crew member, the smell of death on his turnouts. And the eyes of a mother looking at me over the body of her 9-year-old son haunt me to this day.

Joy

Well, I'm sure I needed that cry. Anyone else? :bawling:

KimRN
01-30-2008, 01:31 PM
I have thought of something else. Because of my job title, I no longer have a patient load and so the 'tasks' of nursing are, for me, few and far between. There is one thing, however, that I do that is directly patient-related: I scribe for codes and trauma system entries. Really. I do! And I like it! I find great pleasure in watching the flow of care to ensure that everything that can be done is done - and in a timely manner, too! The first couple of times I gently asked for information startled the nurses and physicians. It was not long, however, before my value as "over-see-er" was publicly acknowledged and soon welcomed! Just thinking about the increased safety and efficiency my involvement has brought makes me smile.

Joy

Oh my - I LOVE being the scribe for codes! Having every little detail neatly and succinctly down on paper - it must fulfill my obsessive compulsive self!! I live to chart!

P/J
01-31-2008, 01:07 AM
Here a weird one. Cleaning patients who have soiled.:ahhhhh:
Not my most favorite, however I have got great feelings of accomplishment after finishing and seeing that the patient is much more comfortable and thankful for what you just did for them (even the ones in ICU).

Mr Ian
02-25-2008, 10:09 AM
I argue with people. Sometimes just for the fun of it.
Perhaps not what you might call 'nursing' but when I work in secure mental health facility; arguing against everyone elses' more obvious yet oversimplified decisions often puts the cat amongst the pigeons. Sometimes I do it because it's all too easy to lock them up and hide the key.. sometimes because they think it's time for someone to go - when really a child sex offender who won't undertake any form of counsel or intervention - deserves to perhaps hang around a little longer. Last week I argued for a man with acute systems failure (yes, he was being detained in a secure mental health unit) and the nurses and doctors said he shouldn't smoke so they just took his smokes off him. I argued it was his right to kill himself with his lifestyle choices if he so desired.

I argue for the cause.

Mother Jones, RN
02-25-2008, 04:33 PM
I argue with people. Sometimes just for the fun of it.
Perhaps not what you might call 'nursing' but when I work in secure mental health facility; arguing against everyone elses' more obvious yet oversimplified decisions often puts the cat amongst the pigeons. Sometimes I do it because it's all too easy to lock them up and hide the key.. sometimes because they think it's time for someone to go - when really a child sex offender who won't undertake any form of counsel or intervention - deserves to perhaps hang around a little longer. Last week I argued for a man with acute systems failure (yes, he was being detained in a secure mental health unit) and the nurses and doctors said he shouldn't smoke so they just took his smokes off him. I argued it was his right to kill himself with his lifestyle choices if he so desired.

I argue for the cause.

Did he ever get his smokes back?


MJ :pepsi:

gracenotes1
02-27-2008, 08:29 AM
Wound Care: I loved it. I loved working on a huge decub, one of those tunnelling kind, and little by little day by day seeing it heal from the inside out.

I also liked giving injections and drawing blood. I was good at it, and my patients sometimes said, "did you give me my shot already?" that was very satisfying to know that I had learned a skill that was very painful, and made it not so painful. I was good at drawing blood too and starting IVs. I liked being the one who they would call when no one else could get it.

I did my preceptorship in the nursery. I liked giving the babies that first bath and then taking them all bundled up with the little cap on their little heads to their parents. It was just fun.

I also liked the process of caring for people with a high risk of pressure sores. I liked figuring out the best bed for them, the best postioning for them etc. and teaching. I loved teaching my nurses!!!

I still call them "my nurses" because as DON I was responsible for them.
Somedays when the paperwork and budget had me wanting to scream. I would leave my office and go help an LPN give meds, or do all of the FSBS for her or help the CNAs make beds.

I also liked making rounds with the Doctor. Especially when I would catch him not washing his hands. (that was fun)Then he got a little infection control inservice.