Dumb things new nurses do.... - page 8

by ohioSICUrn 44,730 Views | 92 Comments

Drew routine labs from a PICC that was STILL infusing TPN.. Got a call from lab with a critical Blood Glucose of 900. Learned my lesson, turned off TPN, FLUUUUUSHHHHED the line, re-draw labs...:cheers:... Read More


  1. 3
    I recall this near-code trauma patient up in the ICU. First the surgeon puts in a chest tube for a hemothorax but she didn't clamp the tube quick enough or underestimated the pressure. Needless to say the walls got colored red for that one.

    Then we are prepping this patient for emergency transport to the OR. I'm cell saving at the moment and I check the cell saver and see the program is still set on "washing" and decide well it's safe to disconnect the empty bag for a second because it's still washing. I don't recheck the cell saver and naturally don't notice the program switched to "emptying". I d/c the tubing and I dread as I see the line fill up with red liquid quickly rushing to the exit. In a vain attempt I try to reattach the bag as it is hanging on a hook so the end of the line is at everyone's eyesight. Of course I fail to reattach but manage to create a pressure faucet between the two connections and the result is a huge spray of (possibly contaminated) blood all over everyone running the trauma.

    Some laughed some looked mad. I was possibly more red then the blood that was covering me and everyone else. So I went to offer peace food later to everyone. But as a nice result I did get washed by the hottest nurse in our ICU ^^.

    Ran 100s of cell saves, always warn new grads to double check their connections to prevent these blood sprays... I failed to listen to myself ^^.
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    Quote from mds1
    the funniest booboo i saw, was the pt was sitting inthe chair in the room and let his wife lie down in the bed with covers on. the cna took the vital signs of the "pt in the bed" lol.. which was really the wife!! the cna got to the door of the room, said, wait a minutes, this pt is supposed to be a male, turned around to find the pt laughing. she took the correct vital signs and came out of the room so embarassed!!! lol
    one of our residents (as in baby docs, fresh out of medical school) was a patient on our unit, and all of the other residents used to hang out in his room. one night when i was working midnight shift, the charge nurse asked me to get vs on all 15 patients in our "pod". i did, including the guy in scrubs lying on the patient's bed. turns out it wasn't the resident who was actually the patient. he had sneaked out to get a smoke and the chief resident was napping in his bed. he must've been tired, though -- he didn't even wake up!
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    "
    those stinking prefilled saline syringes will be the death of me. the first time i had to flush a patients line my instuctor instructed me to "burp" it, well i pushed too hard and shot my patient in the face, i thought i was going to die.
    "

    i'm a new nurse, and i used to push out the pressure with those, and then i realized it works better to draw back and then push the saline back up to the top. no more sudden gushes of 1.5 mls out of that syringe!

    this feed gave me a lot of encouragement after feeling super incompetent the other night! i mislabeled my tubes with the wrong patient. thankfully, the lab let me sneak under the table and relabel them since i was certain of who the blood belonged to!
    Last edit by beautifulbyHisblood on Apr 19, '12
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    Sorry, I didn't meant to post twice and I can't delete this post! :P
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    From a friend: She looked at the monitor, saw V-fib, and told her preceptor "There's something wrong with the monitor. He's too stable to go into v-fib." Yeah, it was real v-fib.

    From me: A known seizure patient started seizing. I'd never even seen a seizure before. I froze and all I could think to do was yell "Seizure!" (We always yell that for assistance with seizures) Thankfully another RN took over and I unfroze and started suctioning a minute later and everything turned out ok.
    DeLanaHarvickWannabe likes this.
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    LOL, I love this post. I like to refer to my dumb moments as my "stupid nurse tricks", I had hung a bag of ABX on an IVPB, and came back an hour later to change it for the second IVPB and it hadn't infused at all, come to find out I hadn't opened the roller clamp! DOH!
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    In my first job i worked on an adolescent floor. And we had many teen girls with Stds.....i was giving report and i mixed up which patients had what STD and my preceptor looked up the results and said "no you u have them mixed up" I dont no why but i bursted into tears and was crying hysterically... LOL i was devestated...the nurse i gave report to was like its really not a big deal and walked away... i crack up about it now....it was so silly of me...hahaha
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    This happened to me when I was a student nurse. I was giving Lovenox SQ shot to a very skinny pt. I raised the bed and cleaned the skin good at the site with alcohol, slightly got a hold of her tissue, gave the shot and......Lovenox spread out like a fountain ??? my instructor was MAD. I should grab the "fat" hard. Had to request a new dose. Live and learn.

    Got 0.9NS shower x 2, forgot to unclamp ATB IVPB X2, burst the green top morphine vial X1.......in my two months of nursing career.

    Thanks for sharing stories. Makes me feel a lot better as a new RN.
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    Patient this week with an NG tube. Offspring of said patient is a nurse on the floor below me. For whatever reason this made me really high strung. Came in to give meds via NG tube. Found the port.....figured I would assess the insertion site while I was down there, so started pulling up the patient's gown to expose the abdomen to make sure skin was okay etc. Searched and searched and searched.....muttering to self about "where is it..usually here on the left...mumble mumble...." Could not find the insertion site, so finally take the tube, getting it out from under the patient's arm and half stuck under sheets and etc etc......following with my fingertips until I realize....idiot. It's an NG tube. Where do you THINK the insertion site is????? You've been looking at it for 15 minutes now. I just somehow was stuck on thinking of a peg tube and was going to be really really thorough, thinking ahead to skin care and dressing change etc. What's funny is the patient was....well....so patient! Never said a word, just let me hunt around like a buffoon. I'm already sheepishly laughing at myself over that one.

    I have also shot a patient in the eye with a flush syringe. Yay me.
    nurse671, skyegirl, sapphire18, and 1 other like this.
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    I sure hope the lab didn't seriously believe that glucose result. On our chemistry analyzers, we will see a sharp increase in the potassium, glucose, total protein, and usually either see the specimen is grossly lipemic, or if we don't get to see the specimen, we will get a supressed high lipemia index. This is a hallmark of TPN contamination and any lab scientist worth their salt would just call for a recollect. I would NEVER give a result like that to a nurse!

    Quote from ohiostudent'RN
    Drew routine labs from a PICC that was STILL infusing TPN..

    Got a call from lab with a critical Blood Glucose of 900.

    Learned my lesson, turned off TPN, FLUUUUUSHHHHED the line, re-draw labs...


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