Overdoses... - page 2

Hello...Just curious if you happen to get alot of illegal drug overdoses that you have to deal with....what kind of drug, and what is done when the patient comes in?... Read More

  1. by   wishingmary
    I work as an aide in the MICU and we get a lot of OD's. I agree with Nurse Ratched. We had a patient who got 7 rounds of mucomyst. You could smell it all the way out of the unit, down the hall to the elevators. It is truly horrid stuff but I don't think there is anything worse that a person could OD on that is an over the counter. Lots of Cocaine OD and they all look the same; emaciated with these little reddish dots all over them, not petechia but something else. They all have Hepatitis C and wear wild tattoos. In fact, if I see a young patient with tattoos, so far they have all had Hepatitis C. I know alot of people wear them, even nurses with their tongues pierced but I guess I'm getting off the subject. What will you see I guess depends on where you go. I love the MICU. Everything you learn in nursing school is there in neon lights only more than you will ever learn in nursing school. I'll be graduating in December, 2003 and then on to boards. The sickest I see are those in multiple organ failure, pancreatitis, TB, peritonitis, and brain stem injuries. Lots of older diabetics suffering the horrids of that disease.
  2. by   Zee_RN
    Tylenol in its many forms seems to be the favorite---plain acetaminophen, Darvocet, Percocet, etc. A few benadryls. Tricyclics are another favorite--and potentially lethal. Sleepers like Ambien and Restoril too. Any of the antidepressants. And then there's the combination ODs....they just took everything in the medicine chest. Amazes me how these young people (most of them are between 18 and 45) have so much medication in their homes! I have nothing here personally (well, unless I want to OD on my husband's lipitor!).

    Mucomyst for Tylenol OD's is always fun. Smells like perm solution to me. It is also amazing how these people who wanted to DIE a couple of hours ago are now complaining about the food, the blankets, the monitors, etc. Just can't wait to turf them to psych when they are done with their 24-hour monitoring. (Every once in a while we do get a realllllly serious attempt and that's a whole different issue; more compassion *does* kick in. I just get really annoyed with those who just wanted to get their boyfriend/girlfriend/mom/dad's attention with a dozen Tylenol--who then sit and complain all day about the restrictions of the ICU. I always want to sit down with them and explain the restrictions of a COFFIN.)
  3. by   ShortFuse_LPN
    Boy, I must be naive or working in LTC has sheltered me!:imbar

    I really never thought that someone would OD on Tylenol!
  4. by   sanakruz
    Zee-
    I think talking about the potential consequences of such behavior to an S/P OD patient is an appropriate nursing intervention.
    I have always been a fan of reality theray.
  5. by   mattsmom81
    And then we get the antifreeze drinkers...uggh.

    One of our ER nurses threatens to write a book entitled" Suicide: How to get it right the first time." and send it anonymously to our frequent flyer OD's.

    I know, I know...sick warped nurse humor. We all sure do tire of the attention seekers don't we. I can relate to all the above stories.

    Those who REALLY want to do themselves in eventually find a way, I've discovered

    I feel so sorry for these persons' families/close friends...if one truly does not want to live I guess I can accept that feeling; but what that does to loved ones is horrid. The guilt and pain are immeasurable. It especially tears my heart out seeing mothers and fathers watch their children destroying themselves... slowly or quickly it's pure torture. It's gutwrenching for me to try to comfort these parents.
  6. by   petiteflower
    I visited the site to which sanakruz referred-----omg!!!!
    THAT IS SO SCARY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  7. by   sanakruz
    Aint it ,tho, petite!!!! Can you imagine....
  8. by   MelRN13
    Originally posted by Nurse Ratched
    I love it when we have to give mucomyst for acetaminophen od's. Before I am branded cruel, one has to understand that the vast majority of them are young people (18-22 or so) who had some stupid romantic notion about a boyfriend rushing back to them when they found out about the attempt, or a way to temporarily get them out of desperate academic straits. The pt always carries on about the horrible smell and the worse taste. But by then they have settled on living and don't dare not drink it for fear of killing their liver. Apparently it also can be given IV, but I've never seen it done (I think the sensory experience is part of the don't-do-this-again therapy.)
    We get those same kind of patients! We've found that if you mix mucomyst with Coke, they seem to drink it better. But man, does that stuff reek!
  9. by   ageless
    let's not leave out the treatment for lithium toxicity..... hours and hours of dialysis
  10. by   zudy
    too true, ageless! I use to threaten to take my OD's on a tour of our dialysis unit. I've seen lots of Tylenol OD's, benadryl, actually a few antibiotics( from when people wouldn't finish thier RX, then try to OD on it later)
    We see lots of crystal meth now. I hate that stuff! I had one pt shoot it up then come to ED "My heart is racing" Well,REALLY! Tied up one of cardiac rooms all shift.
  11. by   pkmom
    In clinicals recently a fellow student had a pt who had OD on only God knows what. She was so out of it, had to have a sitter in their all day. Her boyfriend kept bringing food and things in, saying she needed her "iron pills" I don't know how long it took them to figure it out.
  12. by   Raychelle
    I happened to be doing some research on OD for my advanced psychology class, being that I am in college and a senior, and I would like to say that some of you nurses seema b it cruel, I dont mean to be rude, but especially the nurses who are upset about the tylenol overdoses. Being a bipolar girl who has struggled with the disease for the last 7 years i was ocne very suicidal and did take over 30 tylenol to try to kill myself, and it wasnt because I was dumped by a boy, or i was just doing it to get a bit of attention from my parents, yes it was a cry for help but it wasnt solely for show off reasons. i was genuinly depressed, and felt lost alone and with no way out and when i went to the ER i didnt complain about taking the mucomyst, i didnt complain about the hospital , or the food, or the beds or the nurses or how awful i felt- i sucked up to the severity of the situation and talked to the doctors about my options with medication and such, not that oyu need ot know my lfie story, but if i had kwnon that you nurses really felt this way about the patients who try to take their own life with OTC medicine, i probablly would have felt worse about what i did...im sorry this entry is long, but what some of you said was rather upsetting and i needed to share this and see if i got any responses from RN's out there.
  13. by   catz
    i gotta say i agree with raychelle. not all otc ods are just to get attention. some people complain as a way of coping with having their serious attempt foiled. others, if treated with compasion will sit up n listen to advice u give them. try showing some empathy and understanding....u will get a lot further. u have no choice but to treat these people. who are u to decide y they took an od. did/do they tell u it was because they wanted so n so to heed them.

    dont jump to conclusions when u no nothing about the clients reasonings behind the od.

    im curious now too.....how do u treat self harmers who come for sutures?

    how u treat a client this time can make all the difference to their willingness to come forward and ask for help next time they need it.

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