Saturday, April 18, 2009

But seriously. Eff you.

Wow. I just had my first serious hell no moment with one of my co-workers this week. It's a pretty big let down, too, because one of the reasons I got into ER nursing in the first place was the idea that a setting like this was so full of patient drama that nurses wouldn't need to create their own. Apparently not.
I already had issues with this person- he decided early on in the internship that it would be a good idea to give me and a bunch of the other interns shit for stuff we had no control over- but I had pretty much chalked it up to some stupid tough love crap and gotten over it. I hadn't had much exposure to him lately, but he was actually very friendly and helpful yesterday, so I was actually starting to think I may have been wrong. Again, apparently not.
Yesterday morning, I was taking care of a lady who was having severe back and abdominal pain. The doctor ordered 2 mg of Dilaudid, which I gave like I always do- slowly and diluted in 10 ml of saline. I was by myself in the room with the patient and her husband, and after I gave the Dilaudid she immediately got really anxious, her heart rate went up to 150 and she started breathing really fast. I opened the door to see if I could get help and ran back to the patient to calm her down and reassure her. I'm standing there and Mr. asshole nurse comes in, looks at the monitor, and asks me if I gave the Dilaudid fast. I told him no. He then asked if I diluted it, and I said yes. He asked me again if I gave it fast- no- and then he told me that sometimes people get anxious when they get Dilaudid or Morphine quickly, and walked out of the room. I honestly didn't even think twice about the fact that he did this in front of the patient and her husband- whatever- and I later found out it definitely wasn't me, since the same thing happened immediately after I discharged her- 4 hours after she had gotten anything. It seemed like she was prone to anxiety, was in pain, and I knew she had never gotten that drug before. Case closed.
I was going about my day taking care of my other patients when me preceptor sat down next to me and said, "So, Mr. asshole nurse told me you pushed Dilaudid fast on a patient?"
Um, excuse me? No. I told her no- he wasn't in the room- he asked me three times- and I told him I didn't. She informed me that he not only said that I did this, but that I was an unsafe nurse and she needed to watch me. Helll no.
This pretty much just led to a serious heart-to-heart with my preceptor, about the facts of life working here- the first of which is, that nurse is, in fact, a backstabbing ass. The second of which, no one is your friend and you shouldn't really trust most people. Bummer. Most importantly, though, I learned my preceptor rules and that petty drama is not exclusive to women.


  1. Nurses love to eat their young. I don't get it. It's completely ridiculous. It's one of the reasons we all get so burned out so quickly. Every unit I've been on has had at least 1 asshole.

  2. Ugh, it sucks you have to deal with someone like that...but there always seems to be one (or a few) that think they are better than the rest. Just brush it off. He probably has a crappy home life & takes it out on those he works with.

    I've been a nurse for 5 years & have pushed a lot of Dilaudid over those 5 years (work on progressive care). Rarely do I dilute it & I have yet to see anyone's heart rate skyrocket as a result of giving it too fast or too slow or just right. I'm glad you were able to see that your pt's increased HR was connected to anxiety rather than pain medication.

    I'm glad you were able to have a heart to heart with your preceptor.

  3. I was actually a patient in an american hospital and had a student nurse in training who took care of me (ya,and i even got dilaudid and morphine IV push!with no side effects like u describe) and I made sure I told her what a good job she did and made sure her preceptor knew too. They knew I was an RN so hopefully they gave her credit due.... (and hopefully they didn't think I was a just a drug seeking RN hahaha! btw I have since discarded the oxycodone that i was RXd after I finally got my surgery to fix my problem here in canada!)