Friday, June 11, 2010

Sick or stupid?

I've noticed a strange, strange phenomenon. Especially lately. Everyone I get in one particular night is either A)too stupid to function with nothing wrong or B)trying their hardest to go be with Jesus.
Night A was the night before last. I come in to some serious fuckery with a lady being admitted for hypoxia and apparently, TB, which was the dumbest thing in the whole world. This lady was 34 with no med history except for bipolar disorder and alcoholism. Her hobbies included smoking and smoking. She had a cough, shocker. Her x-ray showed pneumonia. Everything was fine, until some family practice admitting doctor lost his shit and decided she had TB because she lived in a halfway house with some other women, and she was coughing up streaks of blood. Really. If I had pneumonia and continued to smoke 20 effing packs a day for 3 months, I'd probably have blood streaked sputum, too. So there was a whole ridiculous mix up about getting her into a respiratory isolation room, which just led to her staying in the non-respiratory isolation room in the ER for 7 hours, because who cares about the ER nurses, those fools probably have been exposed a thousand times anyway. This leads to us cutting her off from her favorite past time, and subsequently, to her trying to light up in the room with her oxygen on not once, but twice. Awesome.
At least she was nice, unlike the douchebag my charge nurse put next door. This moron seriously checks into the ER because according to him, he lives in a house with some cokeheads who apparently leave their coke lying around all over the countertops and tables and such, and he wanted to get his blood drawn and tested for drugs because he might have touched some and it might have gotten in his system. When I explained to him that the ER does not run labs on demand and that we don't even do blood tests for drugs but urine tests, he cops an attitude and informs me that he already did one of those tests at home and it came up negative and that he was paying, like, 400 bucks for this visit and he wanted a blood test. I decided to let big Bulgarian doctor deal with his ass from here on out, because I had reached my capacity for foolishness. Bulgarian doc offers him one more urine test, which he begrudgingly accepts- he then precedes to bitch about how long he's waiting to get his results, the fact that the results showed that he had THC in his system and how we were "motherfuckers" because of it, and how long it was taking him to get discharged. OH MY GOD I DON'T CARE SHUT UP. You are lucky we didn't MSE your stupid ass to begin with. 8 hours total is nothing. If it were up to me, you would have waited 48. Outside. Because you are too stupid to even warrant a room.
Add another 15 stories like this one and you have my night.

Last night, on the other hand was bananas- I take report on a 60 something lady who looked about 80 something with no veins, on dialysis with gastroparesis puking her guts out with a blood pressure of 289/150 that the doctor refused to treat because "it's like that because she's vomiting and that's bad medicine"... okay. Gets admitted, I call and let the admitting MD know about the pressure before she goes upstairs, who precedes to freak out on me about why the pressure hasn't been treated, in a conversation that ends with me telling him, "I don't know if you know this, but I'm a nurse and that means I can't write orders for blood pressure medication. Only doctors can do that. That's why I'm calling you." He apologizes and puts her on a Cardene drip and I ship her up to ICU. At the same time I've got a non english speaking dude with an ugly CHF excerbation and some nasty diabetic ulcers, a lady who attempted suicide by taking a shit ton of blood pressure meds who is attempting to escape, and an old lady with chest pain and a heart rate of 160.
I get everyone fixed up and admitted and get a sweet lady with terrible oxygen sats and 2 ginormous pulmonary emboli- we need to give her blood thinners but she also has some sort of terrible chronic vagoo bleeding lady problem. Yikes. Then I get an allergic reaction who's totally freaking out and a little old paw paw on the ambulance from the nursing home who is pissing straight blood and now has a fever and is looking suspiciously septic-shocky. I start a second IV on him and get him a new catheter that's all set up for bladder irrigation and give report to the day shift.
WTF? Why can't some of the stupids check in on sick people night and get put in my rooms next to some of the sick people so I can get a break? I guess maybe they do, but they wait for 9 hours like they deserve and then leave without being seen like always. Oh well. I'd rather take care of the sick ones any day.


  1. Someone sent your link to me. It is great! So true. I used to be a nurse in the hood and everything you say is like it is. Sometimes when I am buried under my paperwork in research I think about returning to the hospital. After reading your blog I remembered why I left. Keep up the good work.