June, 2008 Archive

June 17, 2008, 6:53 am

Grand Rounds in the South Pacific!

Oh man, what I would give to be here right now!

This is a photo of Saipan, which happens to be the location of this week’s Grand Rounds as Dr. David at Marianas Eye takes on hosting duties.

But all is not lost! I may not be in Saipan, but I am in my natural habitat: a cushy corner chair at Starbucks with a caramel macchiato in a beautiful ceramic mug, paid for with my Paul McCartney Starbucks card (yes, Candy, I’m still using it!).

And I have all morning to read Grand Rounds. Haven’t been able to do this for ages! Sometimes heaven is in the simplest things!

This photo, by the way, came from a site called IgoUgo where you can find a photographer that goes by the name of edgychick. Check out the rest of her photos.

If they don’t get you planning a vacation to Saipan, nothing will!

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June 12, 2008, 11:12 am

Change of Shift and More Blogosphere Goodies!

….is up over at Nurse Ratched’s Place!

Check out the variety of caps she managed to find – and I thought I had seen them all!

Next edition will be hosted by Braden at 20 Out of 10: Musings of an Emergency Room Nurse, so send in your submissions via Blog Carnival or to “braden at bkellis dot com”.

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Medscape nurse blogger Beka lives (and works) with dystonia every day. Until I “met” Beka online, I knew nothing about dystonia. She sent me the following information that can be useful to persons living with dystonia and the people who care for them. As the email says it best, I will copy it here:


Interested in learning about this rare movement disorder, which afflicts close to 1 million individuals in the US? More than 40 million people suffer from a movement disorder such as Tremor, Parkinson’s disease and Dystonia causing intense functional disability, pain, involuntary movements and bizarre postures. Cures do not exist for many of the above mentioned movement disorders. The CD highlights an interview Dr. Oz conducted with one of his ICU nurses at Columbia-Presbyterian, Beka Serdans,RN, NP and her neurosurgeon from Weill Cornell, Dr. Michael Kaplitt, innovator of gene therapy in New York City in November 2007 reaching an audience of more than 6 million Oprah listeners. Beka, herself, has dealt personally with dystonia and underwent Deep Brain Stimulation in December 2004.

To purchase a Copy of the CD, which also highlights the Rocker, Alice Cooper, in 3 Public Service Announcements for dystonia and tremor, checks can be made out to Care4Dystonia,Inc. Each copyrighted CD is available for $ 20.00 US dollars. We kindly ask that you forward this to patients, colleagues and others with movement disorders.
For Address information please visit Care4Dystonia.org.

Beka is actually the founder of Care4Dystonia.org, and the website has wonderful information. Definitely worth checking out! And while Alice Cooper is not exactly my style of music, he is bringing out a new album and it’s totally cool he’s doing these Public Service ads! Alice, you rock!

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If anyone has been on the forefront of the internet and diabetes, it’s Amy from DiabetesMine. Check out Amy’s new You Tube video, Diabetes RELOADED. Cool “James Bond” music. (I have got to learn how to embed video…) Here’s the backstory to the video!

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NeoNurseChic has returned from hiatus! Find out what she’s been up to in her first post: I’m Baaack!

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June 11, 2008, 5:21 pm

You’re Looking Through Me, Where Did I Go?

Behold the faceless nurse!

I bet she doesn’t have to decide whether to wear make-up to work!

Apparently there were many options for nurses in the 1940s – you could (a) watch a doctor, (b) invade the personal space of a patient who looks like he’s painting, (c) bandage a boo boo, (d) feed a kid or (e) wash a patient’s hand.

Wait a minute.

That’s what Cherry Ames did and I became a nurse because of her!

I guess if she had put tubes down noses and up other orifices, described the smell of a GI bleed or told exactly what happens to a patient in DIC, I might not be where I am today.

Some things you don’t need to know until you need to know.

Kotex did a lot of advertising for nurses during World War 2. I wonder why we don’t see them working with nursing recruitment today?

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I’m on my second day off after a six-night stretch, including a 12-hour shift in the middle.

I’m really getting too old for this type of stuff.

Of course, it did not help that I was up for a full 24-hours watching my man Kasey Kahne win the Pocono 500 right in the middle of the stretch.

I managed to stay up until the race was over at 3:30, but then I was so amped up I couldn’t fall asleep!

So much for Budweiser making you drowsy.

Not that I drank a lot of it.

Or anything.

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The patient was anonymous.

No dates, no names, no shift, no diagnosis.

Just a routine satisfaction survey that was routed to the emergency department.

And the patient was not happy.

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The doctor took forever to see me!

Well, it may have been a while before the doctor was able to see you. There are patients who came in before you. A very critical patient may have come in after you. In the meantime, your nurse was probably (a) placing an IV, (b) drawing your blood and ordering the initial tests, (c) starting your fluids, (d) giving you medicine per protocol and/or (e) ordering x-rays.

Didn’t you see the nurse?

The doctor was mean!

Gee, that’s too bad. Let’s see, while you were in the emergency department, you may have seen the doctor for, oh, twenty minutes total. They examined you, confirmed the tests that were ordered, added new ones, perhaps ordered more pain medicine. Then when all the tests were back, they summed up the findings, gave you his opinion and discussed options. In the meantime, every need you had was taken care of by a registered nurse, who had the time and the knowledge needed to keep you comfortable.

Didn’t you see the nurse?

The doctor ignored my requests for pain medicine!

Oooh, sorry again, but I don’t think so. You see, the primary focus of patient care in general is the relief of pain. Seriously. We document it, medicate for it and document the response. You need more, you get more. Unless, of course, you are a suspected drug seeker and nine times out of ten you’ll get it anyway. Chances are the person you asked for pain medicine was a registered nurse. Chances are the reason you didn’t receive what you wanted when you wanted it was explained by a registered nurse.

Didn’t you see the nurse?

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With all due respect, what century are you living in?

Did you really think that when you came into the emergency department you would have the undivided attention of a physician?

If you were dying, perhaps.

But you weren’t, as your evaluation makes clear.

Maybe if you had spent less time worrying about the doctor and more time actually looking at the people who were caring for you minute-by-minute, you would have realized that you were receiving attentive, appropriate care by professional nurses.

Didn’t you even see us?

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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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