My work schedule has been crazy- lots of days on with nothing to write about but things that would make me sound horribly, horribly bitter, and no time to write about it anyway, and recently 5 days in a row off! Lots of playing/watching hockey, drinking beer, cooking experiments and realizing I'm super out of shape- not much nursing related to mention. So, this seems like a perfect opportunity to pull out some firsthand and secondhand stories that did not merit their own entries- enjoy!
Most recently- a possibly drunk/very hostile man in his mid 40s, who I only saw briefly after leaving fast track to check on red zone friends during shift change. All I knew was that he was there for back pain and was acting a complete fool- screaming at the nurses, swearing, demanding to know when the doctor was going to see him after being there for 15 minutes. He became so threatening to the day nurse that the hospital police had to escort him out without treatment, not before having a big confrontation with the nurse and charge nurse in the hall, during which I was almost sure he was going to get tazed. The awesome part of the story is what I found out the next day- not only did the guy get tazed after leaving the ER, get readmitted, only to have the doctor refuse to treat him because of his behavior, but the initial reason he came to the ER in the first place, the reason he had back pain: he got body slammed by his MOM. His mom. Who, if your math matches mine had to be at the least, 60, but probably more. Yeah.
From the other weekend shift- an elderly man who presented to the ER with a pencil inserted in his urethra. With x-rays to prove it. When asked WHY, the guy apparently kind of shrugged and said he didn't get much action anymore. Okay?
`From one of our ER docs- a psych patient at our sister hospital, who casually walked up to the nurse's station, pulled out his junk, stuck it on one of the charts one of the RNs was working on, and said, "can one of you ladies tube this up to the third floor for me?"
A few weeks ago, patient who ended up on my team after having been on a month long alcohol bender. He was extremely disheveled and mentally jacked- in fact, he was so drunk, he pooped himself, which isn't too unusual. What was unusual was the fact that when we took his pants off to clean him, a lizard ran out! Poor little guy. This my teammate telling me the funniest thing I have ever heard at work: "Girl, he was so drunk he shit a lizard!"
Finally- the confirmed legend. If you are at all squeamish, you should probably skip this one. The best way to tell it is probably the way I first heard about it. About a month after I started my internship, I met up with a friend from nursing school who had also started working in a different ER in the city- the only ER that sees more traffic than mine, as well as TONS of crazy stuff. When I asked her what the weirdest thing she had seen yet was, she thought a minute and replied, "Well. We have this guy who uses his ostomy* as his money maker."
"Wait, what?" I thought I understood this, but I couldn't believe it was true.
"He pimps his colostomy."
Apparently, this guy sought treatment on about a weekly basis for STDs in his ostomy at her hospital. As our ERs aren't too far away from each other, and most patients prefer one to the other, I figured she was the only one who would get the joy of treating such classy, and obviously compliant, patient. That was, until I switched to nights, and one of the nurses asked if I had taken care of Mr. Stinky yet. It soon became clear that this Mr. Stinky was the same prostitute (or ostitute?) that my friend's ER saw. I recently found out from one of my friends that this guy took up the time and stunk up the waiting rooms of so many different ERs in the city that the various doctors all got together and told him that if he didn't stop showing up with his nastiness and wasting everyone's time that they were going to call the police and report his source of income (I imagine a citizen like this might have had some warrants as well). Sure enough, he called their bluff and now he's in jail for at least the rest of the year. Looks like I'll have to wait a while before witnessing the horror firsthand.
*in case anyone isn't familiar with the term ostomy, it's when part of the lower bowel has to be removed for one reason or another, and the colon actually has to be re-routed through a hole created surgically in the abdomen, and the patient's stool is collected in a pouch on the outside of the body. Why someone would want to engage in intercourse with this particular hole, however, is a question I cannot answer.