Sigh & Roll Your Eyes at Me, Why don’t you?

Last Tuesday sucked at clinicals.

A.  I was out of practice.  It was the first time in 2 months I’d been on the floor- at a different hospital, under different guidance, on a different sort of floor.

B.  The nurses working that day had the personalities of boiled green persimmons.

C.  B is not a stretch, in fact, I’m pretty sure they didn’t have *that* much personality.

Anyway, if we students tried to ask them anything, most just rolled their eyes at us.

Last clinical, we could push meds as long as we were supervised.  We could change dressings as needed.  We could start IVs, draw blood when it was ordered, hang normal saline, etc…

This quarter, we take vitals, do assessments and clean up shit. (Literal shit)

So, last Tuesday, I noticed my patient’s dressing on the patient’s incision from where the patient had a nephrectomy (kidney removal) was sopping wet.  Not a slight amount of drainage, but you-could-ring-it-out wet.  Asked my teacher if I could change the dressing.  She had to go look at it, seems she thought I was exaggerating.  She thought she’d find a quarter size spot oozing and would have the chance to say, “Oh Snigs, you’re just being silly.”.

She found it to be sopped as I’d said- sopped to the point the patient’s gown was wringing wet and the bed was as well.

She told me to go ask the nurse if she wanted me to change it or reinforce it.  (Good time to point out it had been reinforced SIX times)

She rolled her eyes, huffed and finally told me to change it.

So, I start peeling away the layers of reinforcement and get down to the incision finally.  (Good time to point out I *hate* staple-closed incisions.  They just look like hell.)

Between the bottom two staples, there was part of the patients innards PROTRUDING- an amount about as big as my thumb- literally.

Patient, please wait.  I must confer with the nurse.

Asked the hateful heifer to PLEASE come look at it, I didn’t think it looked right.

I swear, if rolling your eyes could get them stuck in the back of the head, her’s would have been stuck there.  She sighed, she huffed & she rolled her eyes again, before growling for me to “just bandage it!”.  I repeated my plea & demonstrated the size with my thumb.

She didn’t budge her fat, lazy ass out of her chair.  (That particular set of nurses really seem to enjoy their ass time.  The ONLY time I’ve seen any of them away from the desk was at medication time & when they went to lunch.)

So, I did what I was told- against my better judgment- then I documented the whole deal in detail.  Yeah, you could say I like having my ass covered.  And hateful heifer did what hateful heifers do best & complained that I asked juvenile questions and slowed her down.

Anyway, I go back in today & the patient is STILL in the hospital.

Seems the doc came in Wednesday morning, found the protrusion and got royally pissed and the patient ended up BACK in surgery that day & hasn’t done well since.

Taking the patient back to OR might have been necessary anyway, but a small part of me wonders- if she’d just got up off her ass & looked on Tuesday, could something have been done differently?

I’ll never know, but I DO know I will NOT be taking NO for an answer again on something like that.


8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Rick
    May 03, 2010 @ 21:42:33

    I hope the patient recovers.

  2. Glenn Mark Cassel
    May 03, 2010 @ 21:59:37

    Mine was a bit better. No insides protruding. And the staples suck!
    I do hope the patient recovers and the heifer gets a reprimand at a minimum.

  3. Linda
    May 03, 2010 @ 22:03:28

    I remember one of the worst times when I was in nursing school. A woman was admitted the night before her surgery. I went in to do a preop, and was told to tell her everything would be fine. She died the next day during surgery. I felt so bad because I had to tell her everything would be fine.

    I hope you patient makes it. It isn’t on your shoulders, but I know you feel that way. You are going to be a wonderful nurse!

  4. Bob Perrow
    May 04, 2010 @ 00:25:20

    Snigs, you did what you had to do……..grumbling under your breath, but you had to do it. I am dating a nurse now myself, and she tells me stories like this, except she is the one on the top end of the totem pole having to put up with incompetent lazy nurses and techs beneath her. What to find someone? Go check the break room………….

  5. Crucis
    May 04, 2010 @ 12:07:55

    Good on ya! Sometimes you just have to swim upstream regardless of all the flotsam that comes down it. Have you discussed this with your teacher? If anything happens to that patient, that nurse could be liable for negligence.

  6. snigsspot
    May 04, 2010 @ 17:12:11

    Oh yeah, I told her. She is the one that ripped us all up one side & down the other for asking questions first thing yesterday morning. When I pointed out what had happened to my patient from last week, she didn’t say SQUAT. She’s an excellent classroom teacher, but I do NOT like her clinical instructor style AT ALL.

    At this point, we’re supposed to KNOW it all and not bother anyone with questions. IF that were true, why couldn’t I just go ahead & take my boards and be done with it?

  7. D.
    May 05, 2010 @ 00:30:09

    Agreed and ditto all of the above comments. 🙂

  8. Old NFO
    May 05, 2010 @ 09:25:21

    Some times you just can’t win… remember the good and bad ones, they will show you both sides of patient care…

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