I had a code experience on my 9th week of training, with a pt who had been having severe dyspnea on exertion, and PE had been ruled out. I had this pt for two days before she coded and she was able to tend to her own needs well, was A&O, and sat in bed knitting. As each test came back negative she would become more bewildered about her state of ill health. She told me several times that she just wished someone could tell her what was wrong.
She had a port-a-cath that was suspected of being the cause of her misery, as it turned out that part of it had an occlusion (we were unable to access the device).
When I came in on the third day, the night nurse told me and my preceptor that the pt had been confused and having trouble talking,saying the wrong words or things that didn't make sense.
When we first saw her that morning she was sleeping and snoring heavily; she had hx of sleep apnea. When we tried to wake her up to check her status, she did not respond to verbal or pain. She had a resp rate of about 28. As my preceptor and I were trying to figure out what to do next, the resource nurse came in the room and started screaming to call a code. I was surprised at the time because I am a trained EMT, and I had never seen a code from this end before (the circling the drain part, usually the pts have already gone down the drain by the time we got there).
So there I am in the room, which is beginning to rapidly fill up with people. I took a BP which was 120/72 with pulse in the 60's. People were asking ME all about the pt, since I was the most familliar with her. So here I am, new grad, with my pathetic scrap of pt notes and my poor overwhelmed brain, trying to remember what her test results were. Someone behind me was commenting on the fact the the pt had an actual BP, and the resource nurse was arguing with the Dr. running the ambu bag about why wasn't the pt going to be tubed in the room. (Doc wouldn't tube pt because we had to go to CCU in the elevator)
Now my question is: Is it customary to call a code on someone who's still breathing and still has a BP?