September, 2005 Archive

September 8, 2005, 3:41 pm

It’s Everything I Wish I Didn’t Know….

Because I am an emergency nurse, I know:

A full-sized, stainless steel eating utensil can be consumed by an alert, oriented adult patient. By accident.

Death by acetaminophen overdose begins insidiously and ends in tortuous suffering.

A female can be pregnant and not know it until you advise her that, while she indeed has bowel sounds, your stethoscope was just kicked by a tiny foot.

An adult can be perfectly healthy and dead from meningiococcemia in 48 hours.

The urge to void and the time to do so are never concurrent.

An x-ray will show which brand of deodorant, by shape, is residing in a rectum.

Dialysis on a patient who is over 100 years old will be considered.

A child will cling to her nanny while the mother is sitting on the other side of the exam room.

The busier the shift, the more food you should have on the break-room table.

“The flu” can turn out to be internal bleeding three weeks after the intital trauma.

Following the guidelines of regulatory agencies (cough…JACHO….cough) will add three additional pieces of paperwork to your admission packet.

A nurse can count five different species of insect on a homeless patient.

Doctors with the most illegible handwriting are the most appreciative of legible writing on nurses notes.

These are just a few of the things I’ve learned.

Because I’m a Nurse.

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September 7, 2005, 1:45 am

It’s Raining Men!

Check out this ode to testosterone! Yeah, baby! In-your-face recruiting and I love it! Somehow I don’t think many men out there came to nursing by reading Cherry Ames as a child. The integration of men into nursing had already begun by the mid ’70s. The concept of male nurses was very natural to me; I never knew it any other way.

In my graduating class of 1978, there were four men, making up 13% of the students. It wasn’t until I moved into critical care and emergency nursing that I actually worked with men on the job. Most of them came to nursing as a second career.

The ubiquitiousness of men in nursing was brought home to me at the nurses’ station during a recent PM shift. There I sat, a lone molecule of estrogen in a sea of, well, guys. Three RNs, the doc, the ER tech, the unit clerk and a respiratory therapist. Men. Each and every one. The topic of conversation ranged from motorcycles to Nascar to who bench pressed how much in what gym. This was as far from the classic image of nursing as a female-based profession as you were ever going to get. With my usual air of prim professionalism and with the utmost reverence and respect, I listened to the banter… and proceded to imagine all of them in nurses’ caps. I guess the guys with shaved heads would have to glue them on.

We need nurses badly and recruiting tools that focus on men are one way of combating the shortage. This recruitment poster cut right to the chase and I’m sure it was effective in getting men who wouldn’t have otherwise considered nursing to give it a thought or two. It almost got it right. Intelligence. Courage. Skill. I’d add “caring” to that list. It’s what nurses do best. Male or female.

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September 6, 2005, 12:52 pm

A Grand Round Was Had By All!

It’s that time again! Time for Grand Rounds, hosted this week by Corpus Callosum! A list of wonderful topics, in which a post of Emergiblog humbly resides. It looks like a movie extra surrounded by Acadamy Award winners and I am thrilled, to say the least. There is enough reading material at Grand Rounds to keep us all satiated for a week. Enjoy!

Welcome to those who have found Emergiblog through the Corpus Callosum link! Grab your coffee (no one is ever NPO at Emergiblog), look around, peruse a post or two, have a seat in the waiting room and your triage nurse will be with you in just a moment….

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About Me

My name is Kim, and I'm a nurse in the San Francisco Bay area. I've been a nurse for 33 years; I graduated in 1978 with my ADN. My experience is predominately Emergency and Critical Care, and I have also worked in Psychiatry and Pediatrics. I made the decision to be a nurse back in 1966 at the age of nine...

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