Tell me whether you think this is wrong...

  1. OK, a bunch of us were standing in line waiting to get our pics taken for our hospice rotation. This one girl (whom I don't like) started yapping about what we should do if someone dies when we're there. She said that that would be a good time to actually do CPR on a real person. I said, "What?" and she told me that her sister was doing hospice and had a death. The hospice nurse was with her and told her she could try it if she wanted. She said that she could hear her ribs breaking. I flipped out....feeling physically ill. Isn't this desecrating a corpse? And how would you feel if that were your Mom, sister, or daughter??? I really let her have it, and some people didn't understand why I thought it was a big deal. Personally, I think it should (if it already isn't) be against the law. I mean, come on....have some respect for the dead. I also used to work for a funeral home and I asked my ex-boss about it. He said that if someone died like that and came in with a crushed rib cage, he would say something. He said that it could also hinder embalming and/or disfigure the torso.

    So what do you think?? Did I flip out on her for good reason??? Or do you think I am over-reacting???

    Kristy
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  2. 32 Comments

  3. by   RNonsense
    That is DISGUSTING...and yes, wrong. Shame on them.
  4. by   prmenrs
    Most facilities have Policies AGAINST doing stuff like that. It used to be that, after a death the residents were allowed to "practice" intubating on the pt, but that is pretty LONG GONE. And for the reasons you stated, what if it were YOUR mother, father, etc.

    So, no, no "practising" on the recently deceased. Sheesh.
  5. by   whipping girl in 07
    To me it's the same as practicing intubating a dead person, or running a code on a dead person (who's a DNR). Definitely not right, in my opinion. I've heard of hospitals letting med students practice on corpses, but I've never seen it.

    Besides, how do you know you are doing effective CPR? Practice can be just as easily done on a dummy.

    You were certainly right, Kristy!
  6. by   baseline
    I'm speechless.
  7. by   canoehead
    Once the person dies the family "owns" the body and would need to give permission for any procedures that may harm it (including breaking ribs). So what if she probably wouldn't get caught, but if it was my family member, and I DID find out about it, I would nail her to the wall.

    Then there is the moral issue, of taking advantage of the dead person's helplessness, respect for them as a person and mot as just a piece of flesh, and respect for the feelings and sensitivity for the family. Let's face it, when a loved one has just died it is harder to deal with someone who cannot respect your feelings, and this qualifies. I think the small (tiny) benefit of her doing compressions is FAR outweighed by the negatives listed.
  8. by   finallyRN
    I think that is completly wrong and IMMORAL. Even though that person is dead he/she still has rights. They chose not to have CPR while living, why the HELL would they wan't it after they are already dead.
    I would have let into her as well. As a nurse it is your job to be a patient advocate, even in death.

    Meg
  9. by   kids
    Yes, you were right to flip on her, I probably would have repeated her comments to the instructor.

    I know that sicker shyt (sorry I need the expletive here) happens but for the life of me I just can't imagine ANY Hospice nurse I have ever met allowing such a thing, let alone encouraging it.

    An interesting FYI I've picked up over the years...people who talk about the ribs breaking during CPR have probably never actually done it, it is one of those things that once you have felt it happen you want to forget the sound/sensation, not tell people about it.

    BTW...it IS illegal to do CPR on someone you know is a DNR...and what if someone was "practicing" and "accidently got a pulse back...what are they gonna do, hold a pillow over their face?
  10. by   hapeewendy
    yes wrong
    disgusting
    horrible
    terrible
    no good
    and very bad
    and WRONG WRONG WRONG
    you did good kristy
    next time remind her that she has pretty much volunteered by default for ppl to experiment with her after she dies and see how that idea goes over
    I am so disgusted, I dont know what I would have said or done , keep that can of wup ass handy, I have a feeling you're gonna be needing it around this bunch..
  11. by   tattooednursie
    That is sad. Some people are so disrespectful, even to the dead.
  12. by   RNFROG3
    eeeewwwwww!!!That was so wrong of her. You go girlya don't even have your degree and you already are a pt advocate and think like a great nurse. !!
  13. by   OzNurse69
    Is there not some law about interfering with a corpse? And would this not come under that? In which case, aside from being completely & utterly wrong, it would also be illegal....
  14. by   Granted Fal
    I'm not sure i totally understand your post. Did she mean to "practice" CPR, or try to actually resuscitate a client just passing. I have heard cases of the latter, or with elderly, that the inevitable result of CPR on their brittle bones was a lot of broken ribs. However, is this person is just referring to practice this is very strange and seems to be a license threatening maneuver.

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