So I get a call from the lab.....

  1. 5 Your pt has a critical high potassium of 4.8.....seriously?

    Then in the same sentence....your other pt is set for dialysis....tell the dialysis nurse to stop.....their creatinine is 4.1 and dialysis may not be safe....SERIOUSLY?

    I told her to keep the numbers coming and to leave the interpretation to me....

    SHEESH
  2. Visit  mindlor profile page

    About mindlor

    Joined Aug '09; Posts: 1,401; Likes: 2,378.

    40 Comments so far...

  3. Visit  RNperdiem profile page
    9
    At least your lab still calls you. Where I work, there was a memo that told nurses that lab was no longer going to call us if they discarded lab samples (not labeled, hemolysed, lab mishap), we would simply have to check the computer and figure it out.
    I asked why, and was told that the lab spent too much time on the phone communicating with nurses about these things.
    I guess that shows whose time is considered more valuable.
    aboucherrn, canoehead, Ayvah, and 6 others like this.
  4. Visit  loriangel14 profile page
    1
    Why do you have a problem with this? Isn't it normal for a lab to know what the numbers mean? Our lab always calls us with critical values.
    kakamegamama likes this.
  5. Visit  Morganalefey profile page
    3
    Hahahahahha.....that's good stuff.

    I got a phone call about a "critical high" INR for a pt on coumadin. INR was 2.5. LOL
    T-Bird78, barbyann, and NutmeggeRN like this.
  6. Visit  mindlor profile page
    7
    HAHAHA and to lori.....do you think K+ of 4.8 is high? Do you think creatinine of 4.1 is a contraindication for dialysis? I dont have time to waster on stupid phone calls........
  7. Visit  blondy2061h profile page
    3
    Lab has to call for critical values, but they don't interpret them for us. Our critical high K starts at 6.
    ChristineN, Sinman, and Crux1024 like this.
  8. Visit  Aurora77 profile page
    1
    This makes me love our lab. We get our criticals called, but they do use common sense, like in the INR or dialysis pt example. Thank goodness, that would drive me nuts to get those phone calls.
    DizzyLizzyNurse likes this.
  9. Visit  MInurse.st profile page
    3
    We don't get a call from the lab unless K is over 6.0 And isn't normal K 3.5 to 5
    Sinman, merlee, and NutmeggeRN like this.
  10. Visit  Altra profile page
    8
    The two examples you cite, OP, seriously warrant some communication with your manager regarding this. This is either a new lab med tech who is misunderstanding normal ranges, or a glitch in a computer system which is spitting out erroneous notifications of "critical" values ... or something else gone wonky.
    GrnTea, barbyann, CrufflerJJ, and 5 others like this.
  11. Visit  morte profile page
    2
    I would be talking to risk management about this!
    Quote from RNperdiem
    At least your lab still calls you. Where I work, there was a memo that told nurses that lab was no longer going to call us if they discarded lab samples (not labeled, hemolysed, lab mishap), we would simply have to check the computer and figure it out.
    I asked why, and was told that the lab spent too much time on the phone communicating with nurses about these things.
    I guess that shows whose time is considered more valuable.
    merlee and DSkelton711 like this.
  12. Visit  Do-over profile page
    0
    Our lab calls with "critical" values. They have to, and they have to chart what RN they spoke with about it.

    I've never gotten advice about how to deal with these values from them, however. Occasionally, they will ask questions about how the samples might have been collected, or whatever, especially if there is a drastic change.
  13. Visit  uRNmyway profile page
    3
    We had one lab tech at my previous job who would just leave us shaking our heads in amazement. During 5am rounds, one patient had a blood glucose of 25. Our protocol was to do a stat blood glucose by blood draw. So we do the test, and immediately feed him. *20* minutes later, get a call from the lab tech.
    "Oh my God, your patient in bed so-and-so! Make him eat NOW!! His blood sugar is dangerously low!"

    Right, because we were just waiting for you to confirm HOW low it was before we fed the poor man.
  14. Visit  CDEWannaBe profile page
    4
    Had that happen to me once... I've had type 1 diabetes since age 4 and use an insulin pump and have reasonable blood sugars. But using insulin, highs and lows happen.

    After a normal check up there was a major delay in the lab and it took over 2 hrs. to get blood drawn. It was over my lunch hour and I knew my blood sugar was dropping and had turned off my insulin pump an hour earlier to mitigate, but my glucose tablets were in the car and I was worried if I left I'd be put on the bottom of the list. After labs I went to my car, ate a few glucose tablets and waited until BS came up to 80, then went back to my busy day.

    About 4 hours later I got a call from my doctor's office... my blood sugar was 55 and I needed to treat it STAT! The PA was so nice but was clueless my low BS from hours earlier was no longer a problem. She kept telling me I needed to treat it or she would call EMS. I finally told her I'd drink some juice and hung up...


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