Nursing: Then and Now - page 11

by tnbutterfly Admin

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The nursing profession, as a whole, as well as the role of the nurse have evolved dramatically over the past several decades. I personally have witnessed the changing face of nursing during my 30+ years in the profession. Gone... Read More


  1. 2
    "and I remember someone coming up with the "secret" of using maalox to the decub and then applying the heat lamp ... (and how dangerous to rely on a busy nurse like myself to remember to come back and check in 20 minutes!)"

    We made a paste with Maalox or hydrogen peroxide and a packet of table sugar, put it on the decub, and then paper-taped a cardboard denture cup over it with wall oxygen running into it. From a physiological standpoint it probably worked so well because the sugar was hypertonic to suck out edema and killed bacteria, the oxygen helped keep it dry, and the damn denture cup kept 'em off their sacrums. I swear it really worked, though.
  2. 1
    Quote from Pepper The Cat
    Diabetic's sugar was determined by a urine test. Remember dropping pills into a test tube of urine and then comparing the colour of the urine to a chart to see what the sugar was. + 1, + 2 and so forth.
    I was an aide on 3:30p-12mn and collected all the bedpans at bedtime on the same cart we passed breakfast trays on in the morning Took about a half an hour to set up and read all those urine samples. "Blue-negative" was the goal. (And of course, there were the stool guaiacs to do, too...blue there was BAD.)

    Then the bedpans went into the "hopper," the door tipped up and closed, and the hot water and steam cleaned them out, one at a time, and back onto the cart to go back out on the ward.
    turnforthenurseRN likes this.
  3. 0
    Quote from GrnTea
    I had a colleague in the 70s who had had many lost pregnancies, and the only tocolytic they had was IV alcohol. So they put her to bed at about 5 1/2 months on a drip, and she brought it to near-term and had her baby, finally.... but as it grew up it had what we later learned to call fetal alcohol syndrome. Not fun at all.
    That is horrible.
  4. 0
    Quote from GrnTea
    I had a colleague in the 70s who had had many lost pregnancies, and the only tocolytic they had was IV alcohol. So they put her to bed at about 5 1/2 months on a drip, and she brought it to near-term and had her baby, finally.... but as it grew up it had what we later learned to call fetal alcohol syndrome. Not fun at all.
    I always wondered how the babies turned out after all that IV alcohol.
  5. 0
    My youngest is 25 and I remember my MD having a cigarette hanging out of his mouth.
  6. 3
    I can remember washing gloves, placing them on a drying rack, and checking them for leaks before they were autoclaved. I remember cleaning glass syringes and sharpening needles. Catheters were soaked, cleaned and placed in a hot water sterilizer. If a new medication was needed, the "team leader" had a key to the pharmacy and got the medication. Glass thermometers were kept together in a small tray, used, soaked in alcohol, rinsed, dried and placed in the tray to be used again. No individual thermometers at that time. Rectal thermometers had a red tip and a separate section in the tray. Gloves were never used in patient care--well, maybe for a fecal impaction. LOL
  7. 1
    Who else worked in a TB san? Remember what we used to do with TB patients? Lots of fresh air. Gruesome surgical procedures. Isoniazid was brand new. Ten years. . .TB sans were gone.
    nursel56 likes this.
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    I actually did clysis (done when routine IV access wasn't available).

    And NG feedings of REAL FOOD. It was the 24 hour diet menu blenderized by dietary dept and sent up to the floor in a huge mayo jar. We had a presecribed amount of formula to be poured out, mixed with water to thin it, and then to be administered in several boluses at specific times. Each pt had his own big blenderized jar, based on a Physician-ordered, REAL 2400 or 1800 cal, or bland diet (whatever was ordered). And we KNEW what was served on the regular trays that day, as we could "see" spaghetti red sauce, or "smell" cabbage, etc.

    Now we have Ensure, Glucerna, Osmolyte, etc.

    And I too, remember the glass thermometers soaking in alcohol in the little metal trays. And when CNAs made up 'linen packs' for the day shift to start.

    Oh, the good 'ole days...
  9. 1
    Oh lucky you...where I come from, we do not use past tense in most of those!!!
    DeLanaHarvickWannabe likes this.
  10. 2
    This is such a neat thread!


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