A patient made me cry.....

  1. 58
    I usually work ER, but last night I worked the floor due to short staffing. I got this patient as a new admit that literally broke my heart.

    She was in her late 70's, was admitted with a femur fracture. She also has cancer and is currently receiving chemo.

    When she was transferred to the floor, she came in Buck's traction and was moaning in pain. She gripped my hands so tight I just choked up looking at her. She was BEGGING me to make the pain go away. She comes up to the floor with NO ORDERS and only received Morphine 5 mg in the ER prior to transferring.

    She could barely speak above a whisper and she had tears in her eyes. All of my co-workers on the floor as well as the my co-worker in the ER refused to transfer her from that ER cart until there was an order for pain meds. I called the doctor STAT and told her I need an order NOW for pain meds. She put the order in and I medicated the patient and we all transferred her to the bed.

    We tried to be as gentle as we could but this woman's moans got the best of me. She begged me not to leave her and she held my hands for what seemed like forever. My co-workers worked on getting everything else together for her and I just stayed with her.

    She reminded me so much of my great granny who died of cancer when I was 19. I remember holding her hand as she gripped my hand when she took her last breath. She was moaning in pain. This patient so much reminded me of this and I had to excuse myself and cried in the break room.

    I then gathered myself and went to bat for this patient. I called the doctor and got her pain medicine changed to something more stronger to better control her pain. I also got it ordered more frequently. When I left this morning, the patient was sound asleep and stated she was still in pain, but not as bad as when she first came to the floor. Then she takes my hand and says "thank you for everything baby". I had to leave before I started crying again.

    I left feeling some kinda way. Just glad to make a difference in one patient's life.

    Thanks for listening.
    tokidoki7, Apgar10, Hospice Nurse LPN, and 55 others like this.
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  3. 18 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    You were a great patient advocate, so sad her pain issues were not addressed earlier by the ER staff, I mean femoral breaks are well known to be one of the most excruitating injuries a pt. cani incur. Way to go!!
  5. 6
    It is the quality care you provided that makes me want to be a nurse!

    Thank you for being there in the name of everyone's granny!
  6. 1
    I wish the drug seekers I so often care for could see what real 10/10 pain looks like. Grrrr.

    Good for you, you did a great thing for this lady.
    DarkBluePhoenix likes this.
  7. 1
    You did good.
    alem-tsahai likes this.
  8. 4
    Moments like that remind us of why we became nurses in the first place.
    DarkBluePhoenix, mmcdev, AmericanRN, and 1 other like this.
  9. 0
    Quote from afrocentricRN
    I usually work ER, but last night I worked the floor due to short staffing. I got this patient as a new admit that literally broke my heart.

    She was in her late 70's, was admitted with a femur fracture. She also has cancer and is currently receiving chemo.

    When she was transferred to the floor, she came in Buck's traction and was moaning in pain. She gripped my hands so tight I just choked up looking at her. She was BEGGING me to make the pain go away. She comes up to the floor with NO ORDERS and only received Morphine 5 mg in the ER prior to transferring.

    She could barely speak above a whisper and she had tears in her eyes. All of my co-workers on the floor as well as the my co-worker in the ER refused to transfer her from that ER cart until there was an order for pain meds. I called the doctor STAT and told her I need an order NOW for pain meds. She put the order in and I medicated the patient and we all transferred her to the bed.

    We tried to be as gentle as we could but this woman's moans got the best of me. She begged me not to leave her and she held my hands for what seemed like forever. My co-workers worked on getting everything else together for her and I just stayed with her.

    She reminded me so much of my great granny who died of cancer when I was 19. I remember holding her hand as she gripped my hand when she took her last breath. She was moaning in pain. This patient so much reminded me of this and I had to excuse myself and cried in the break room.

    I then gathered myself and went to bat for this patient. I called the doctor and got her pain medicine changed to something more stronger to better control her pain. I also got it ordered more frequently. When I left this morning, the patient was sound asleep and stated she was still in pain, but not as bad as when she first came to the floor. Then she takes my hand and says "thank you for everything baby". I had to leave before I started crying again.

    I left feeling some kinda way. Just glad to make a difference in one patient's life.

    Thanks for listening.
    This is an amazing story. I hope I get a chance like this one to help a pt who's truly in need. Great work!
  10. 8
    You did a good job. However you state you usually work ER. This is an excellent example of how patients medical needs are addressed in Er,, but not something as BASIC as pain control..Her pain should have been controlled before she left ER!
    Please take this experience back with to ER and advocate before transfer.
  11. 0
    What a great nurse you are. A true patients advocate
  12. 3
    Quote from Been there,done that
    You did a good job. However you state you usually work ER. This is an excellent example of how patients medical needs are addressed in Er,, but not something as BASIC as pain control..Her pain should have been controlled before she left ER!
    Please take this experience back with to ER and advocate before transfer.
    Trust me, I was upset with the way the ER handled this. But I also work down there so I kinda understand the hussle and bussle to turn beds. However, this lady should have been medicated and sent up to the floor with orders before the transfer.

    I told my ER co-worker I know you are in a rush, but you know we can't transfer her without pain meds so you are gonna stay until we medicate her. He had no issue with that.

    I see so many drug seekers in the ER that get so much more pain meds that this lady and not ONCE did this lady call out on the call light for her next "pain shot". She just wanted the pain to go away as quickly as possible.

    Sometimes, it's refreshing to work the floor once in a while to see the other side of it.


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