"Funny Codes"?

  1. One night we got a new admission into ICU from ER. It was a female patient being admitted with COPD in her 40's. She did not appear to be in distress and was able to talk with o2 on vital signs were all within normal limits no red flags anywhere. Her nurse got her admission assessment done without incident and pt settled in. Suddenly, we are charting at the desk, when there is a loud crashing sound in her room. We run to her room to find her face first against the wall(Like she had collide with the wall at a great rate of speed) and was slideing face first down the wall, her catheter was stretched acrossed the room (connected to the bed still) her water pitcher spilled all over the floor and her heart rate dropping in the 40's then 30's then 20's call a code. It was a disasterous (sp) code having to perform it in the floor. It took forever to get her intubated and the doctor was soaking wet when he was done with that, then he had to shock her in all that water (with paddles in his hands he said..just say I was a brave man). We were calling for our strong monitor tech to help but he had run to the "Can" and could not come out. It took us an hour to get her body up out of the floor so the family could see her (we had to bind her up like a turkey and use a backboard and hoyer lift plus 6 people to lift).

    I now this was tragic but afterwards we all were talking about the code and how it went and we all started laughing. Sometimes laughter is the only way to cope with this job. Are we just sick or does anyone else have codes like this and how do you cope?
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  2. 81 Comments

  3. by   bill4745
    You are not sick. It is a stress relief.
  4. by   kittagirl
    Hi,
    I know what you mean about codes two come to mind instantly.

    One was a new admit that had come in with vague abdo/ chest pain, asked for a commode as soon as they arrived on the ward. Unknown to us the patient had been constipated for over 10 days and was convinced that the pain was from that (who knows) but had stashed Laxatives on their person and swallowed the whole pack at some point while in the A/E (ER).

    Arrives on the ward in urgent need, asked for the commode, the constipation was solved to the extent that the commode was overflowing on to the floor.
    We had just noticed the smell when we heard a loud crash, ran in to the room to find the pt on the floor covered in poo and a bit blue.

    Call was put out, it was the week the new dr’s started so they ran on to the ward white coats flapping all excited until their shoes started sticking to the floor. I can still see their faces.

    Surprisingly we got the patient back and was eventually discharged with strict warnings about following instructions on laxative packets.

    We’ve also had one where the pt was sat in a reclining chair and we shocked them sat upright. When the shock hit the patient both their arms flew up and hit the doc on either side of them across the face, hard. I know it’s not really funny people been hit, but it was. The air turned blue………………

    The worst part is with the high levels of Adreninal once you start giggling you can’t stop……….
  5. by   fultzymom
    Quote from bill4745
    You are not sick. It is a stress relief.



    I agree! Many times we laugh at things that would not normally be funny. But sometimes you either have to laugh or cry!!

    Leslie:roll
  6. by   stillpressingon
    Quote from fultzymom
    I agree! Many times we laugh at things that would not normally be funny. But sometimes you either have to laugh or cry!!

    Leslie:roll
    I totally agree.It's gotten to where I only tell medical people certain things b/c many non-medical people WILL think I'm being mean/sick/whatever, and I'm not trying to, but in light of everything else some things are just plain hilarious!
  7. by   Antikigirl
    Mine was my first hospital code many moons ago where a MD jumped on a patient that was about to be shocked (he was complaining that no one was doing compressions...hmmmmm wonder why...those pads (not paddles) may not be seen but they are there!)! Took a brave nurse to knock him off to the floor!

    And my part...intern with a doppler probe trying to get a pedal pulse during the shock..I took tackled him and saved him from a very harsh shock! Now this all happened at the same time, sadly the patient didn't make it...but lucky for us a MD and intern did! LOL! It was also very pleasing to tell the intern...no pulse means no pedal pulses no matter what doppler you use..and metal probe to shock BAD!"...LOL!!!!!!!

    It was actually hillarious and all us nurses were just dumbfounded by the actions of the MD and intern (actually the interns came out of the woodworks like curious mice LOL!). But we all got a good laugh afterwards..even the almost 'victims'. (the MD forgot about the pads were now in place not the paddles).
  8. by   burn out
    Quote from TriageRN_34
    Mine was my first hospital code many moons ago where a MD jumped on a patient that was about to be shocked (he was complaining that no one was doing compressions...hmmmmm wonder why...those pads (not paddles) may not be seen but they are there!)! Took a brave nurse to knock him off to the floor!

    And my part...intern with a doppler probe trying to get a pedal pulse during the shock..I took tackled him and saved him from a very harsh shock! Now this all happened at the same time, sadly the patient didn't make it...but lucky for us a MD and intern did! LOL! It was also very pleasing to tell the intern...no pulse means no pedal pulses no matter what doppler you use..and metal probe to shock BAD!"...LOL!!!!!!!

    It was actually hillarious and all us nurses were just dumbfounded by the actions of the MD and intern (actually the interns came out of the woodworks like curious mice LOL!). But we all got a good laugh afterwards..even the almost 'victims'. (the MD forgot about the pads were now in place not the paddles).

    OMG you almost had three codes going on at the same time.
  9. by   banditrn
    There were several of us that started at the same time on the same floor - one day a code was called, and one of our co-workers (who was known for being rather intense - and also a bit large) came RUNNING into the room, LEAPT onto the bed, which for some reason wasn't locked - and the whole bed went sliding across the room into the bed of the other patient!

    I know I'm sick, cause these stories have me laughing!
  10. by   Ayrman
    Two codes stick in my mind after the several hundred - literally - I ran during my EMS career, both in-hospital as part of the ER/Code response team and in the field. One took place in a pool hall in a small town of several hundred people. When the patient was shocked his legs leapt up into the air. One wizened bystander, mouth full of chew no less, exclaimed "My God, did you see his feet jump!"

    Another time we were doing a tiered response with a voly sqaud outside the metro area. One of the medics on the squad worked for us as a Paramedic for his day job. They were trying hard to get a line but hadn't succeeded by the time we met them. This was a rather corpulent lady who was down and she had a large (like AC large) vein running down the medial aspect of her right breast. He and I looked up to see what the other had been looking at, and we knew what each was thinking. We just shook our heads in unision, knowing that we would never live that down if we tried it. Fortunately there was one AC left to try and that stick hit the mark.

    On the same code I went to shock the patient - think Lifepak-5 complete with paddles , this being the mid-80's - and her flesh literally rolled over the side of the sternum paddle as I hit the buttons. Through my knuckles, across my chest and God only knows where from that. We used open microphone APCOR units back then so we could have hands-off 2-way communication, and Medical Control heard a string of mild profanities come over the air. IIRC I also did a little dance. From the look on the faces of the voly squad people (think sardines in a can, there were several packed in there) you'd have thought I was going to be Code #2. Come to think of it there was a very puzzled inquiry from MC as to just what was going on.

    Ayrman
  11. by   RunnerRN
    Not much up to par with those above, but I love when one of my docs is getting ready to intubate a drunk that we've been bagging, tilts the head back, and we get a nice big BURRRRP right in the docs face Even better when it is a new resident who hasn't yet learned to wear a mask when tubing drunks!
  12. by   lauralassie
    Had a pt in ICU that had pica, only she ate everything she could get her hands on, including bed sheets, which caused a major bowel obstruction. She came to us on the vent. She recovered , went to step down , had her first clear liqued diet, choked , aspirated , coded and died. We all were talking about how she could take sheet, spoon etc..but that broth is wicked.
  13. by   jnrsmommy
    OMG!!!! I'm sitting here, about to code myself from laughing so hard!!!

    I was getting report on a pt that was due for discharge the next day. He had been w/ us for about two weeks, and we were ready to see him go. The nurse was telling me how he had an uneventful day, when the secretary came in and called that nurse out of the room. A few min later, the secretary comes in and tells us that room 224 is coding. Wait, that's my pt. We all run out of there into the room, and sure enough, the other nurse is doing chest compressions. Other people are running around trying to clear the room, get the crash cart, etc. I run to the chart, because I do remember seeing DNR papers on this guy. Sure enough, I find them, tell the doc, he stops the code. I'm standing next to the off-going nurse, look at him and say "So, you have any changes you want to tell me about?" Definitely not appropriate, I know, but it just came out.
  14. by   Ruby Vee
    [font="comic sans ms"]so what's the best way to clean coffee off a laptop screen? you guys had me laughing so hard i couldn't control it! i spewed! this thread should have come with a beverage alert!

    so here is one of my stories: this was about 30 years ago and i had just recieved notification that i had passed my boards and was in charge for the first time. we had a patient admitted to our telemetry floor for "work-up". not "syncope work-up" which was common for us or even "thyroid work-up" -- she weighed more than the capacity of our scale. just "work-up." and the first line on her order sheet (in fact the only line) read "bath before seen by md."

    it was a sign of the times (and my youth and inexperience) that instead of laughing my head off, i actually tried to bathe the person before the md saw her. more accurately, i delegated to the two student nurses who were assigned that patient as their first admit under the guidance of the experienced lpn. they were diploma students and had been bathing patients all semester and were sure that we were maligning their skills when we told them to call us if they needed any help at all.

    it wasn't long before one of the student nurses came to me sheepishly and said "she won't fit into the shower." (each room on that floor had a lovely little bathroom with a rather large, tile shower stall.) "what do we do?" bed bath was pretty far down the list of options as the woman, a farmer who clearly didn't get into town very often, was absolutely encrusted with dirt and filth. a soaking was in order.

    we had a large tub room that was rarely used -- we stored all of our extra equipment in there, so it's likely that the students didn't even know there was a tub in the back. the students enlisted two classmates who were already done with their admit, and cleaned out the tub room, cleaned the tub, and led the patient to the tub room accompanied by a pile of supplies including two of the "big boy gowns," since one didn't adequately cover the territory. with the lpn supervising, they got the tub filled, the patient undressed and the floor mopped afterward because most of the water slopped out when the patient got in. by now, most of the staff was aware of what was going on and stopping by to check it out and offer help. the students, far from being insulted by now, were grateful for the help -- especially when it came time to get the now-clean patient out of the tub. she was stuck.

    someone got the bright idea to grease the patient to get her out of the tub, and dumped a whole 16 ounce bottle of keri oil into the mix. it might have worked, except that by now the stress of the bath and being the center of attention was starting to get to the patient, and she began complaining of chest pain and gasping for air. i got called to the scene when she turned blue and stopped gasping for air.

    it took every staff member we had, including some cardiologists and a pulmonologist making rounds in their expensive suits to drag that woman out of the tub. she was greased, remember? ever seen a "greased pig catching contest"? it's impossible to hold onto a greased pig or an enormous, greased patient. keri oil is a superior lubricant! by the time we'd maneuvered two bath blankets underneath her and hauled her, dripping from the tub it was probably too late, but we dragged her out into the hall where there was room to work and started cpr. chest compressions on an enourmous, oiled patient were somewhat problematic. the first person who tried -- one of the cardiologists in an expensive suit -- had his hands slide out from underneath him and found himself sprawled across her chest.

    by then we had the crash cart and the paddles were suitably greased up with the appropriate jelly, and applied to the closest approximation of the correct position that one person could achieve. (thank god it wasn't me with the paddles!) at the shouted "clear", everyone save the hapless resident with the paddles jumped back and jennifer hit the button.

    soaking wet patient lying in a puddle of water and keri oil, resident kneeling in the puddle -- not a pretty picture. the electricity arced in a blue flash above the patient, but those who saw both assured me that the light show was even more spectacular below, and jennifer, the resident came flying backward on her a$$.

    jennifer was fine, the patient didn't make it. when it was all over, i noticed for the first time the ring of ambulatory patients and visitors watching the entire show. it was talked about for years! years later, i worked with a nurse who graduated from that hospital's last diploma class. the story had made it to legend status -- and the nurse who told the story during a boring night shift story marathon prefaced it by saying "i doubt if this is true, but . . ." she didn't believe me when i told her it was true and i knew because i was there!
    Last edit by Ruby Vee on Feb 14, '07 : Reason: typo

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