Vomit and other icky stuff

  1. So, Im going into Nursing school and there is just something I need to know. How do you deal with puke?

    Having worked in a Medical Office I can pretty much handle anything below the waste. Cleaned out many flexsig machines.

    What I want to know is.. How do you deal with puke? The smell? What is your worse puke story? How did you react the first time a patient hurled on you? etc.

    Just wondering..

    Oh, and Is it ok to gross out?
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  2. 15 Comments

  3. by   2ndCareerRN
    I hate the smell of alcohol when it comes back up . I am not to fond of it fresh as far as that goes. It is usually the "pukin' princesses" that can't seem to hold their liquor so their friends bring them to the ER. And, if they aren't puking we get to lavage them, then they puke!! Just about everything else is fine, you can sometimes tell what people have had for dinner if they are vomiting from being sick.
    It is something you will get used to, there are a lot worse smells than vomit...C-Diff, Lower GI Bleed, smelly unwashed body parts..and the list goes on.
    The worst one lately was this little guy, about 8, 2 weeks out from a tonsilectomy, white as Casper. Mom said he vomited a small amount of blood at the mall. While sitting at my triage desk, no warning whatsoever, he vomited a large amount of partially digested blood. He had probably been swallowing blood all afternoon. It looked like somebody had dropped a bowl of whole cranberry sauce on the floor. Anyhow, the little guy was sent downtown to a PICU, back to OR to stop the bleeding and received some blood b4 the night was over.

    But, don't worry about it, you will get used to all of the bodily functions before you know it. And there is a lot more than vomit that will come out of your patients. Good Luck.

    bob

    P.S. Do a search on a thread called "what freaks you out". Some great reading. And welcome to the board.
    Last edit by 2ndCareerRN on May 24, '02
  4. by   fedupnurse
    Vomit isn't so bad. Wait till you have your first really bad lower GI bleed. The smell'll stick in your nose for days at a time! As Bob suggested Check out the what freaks you out and the freakiest things you've seen at work threads. You'll know if you were meant to be in this profession if you find yourself laughing hysterically! Good luck with school.
    Bob, loved the puker face!!!!!!!!!
    Last edit by fedupnurse on May 24, '02
  5. by   suzannasue
    ROFLMAO...bob....that puking creature is hilarious!!!!!!!:roll
  6. by   micro
    oh, body fluids of all kinds, the sights and sounds.......
    oh how i miss it.........
    back tomorrow to enjoy all the pleasure.....
    vacation's over
  7. by   LasVegasRN
    Projectile vomiting is the worst.

    Bob - love that hurling smiley!
  8. by   fedupnurse
    Yes you must have good reflexes in this profession. A friend of mine was standing in front of her patient and he had just been given Bretylium. He power puked and nailed her. She calmly took off her glasses (blinder than a bat without them), walked into the hallway and said "I need new scrubs, NOW!" I felt so bad for her! Then again, I was so glad it wasn't me....
  9. by   OBNURSEHEATHER
    In terms of adult patients, I can honestly say I've never been puked on. I think in OB we know when the nausea will occur, and we're ready for it.

    But the babies... that's another story. Those buggers can be smiling one minute, and the next minute will look worse than anything you ever saw at a kegger in college!

    And those c-section babies... soooo much musous in that emesis!

    Heather
  10. by   bellehill
    The worst is when you have an adult who pukes in the sink instead of the toilet or basin. The chunks don't go down the drain so guess who picks them out. And the smell in the bathroom with the door closed....bad!
  11. by   Nurse K-Bear
    Puke does not bother me. It is the act of puking that does. The gag sounds can just about do me in.

    The other day I was aspirating a g tube and I went to put the aspirate back in when it came spraying out the little port. It sprayed all in my hair. Good thing I wear glasses. I guess that is like getting puked on but without the gag. I thought I was going to puke when that happened!
  12. by   live4today
    Never been puked on by a patient, but have been puked on plenty of times by my kids.

    I've had to clean up a lot of puke from patients, and the smell just about knocked me out, but at least none of it ever got on me.
  13. by   Rustyhammer
    I have never been bothered by puke before but just the other day I was answering a light and the guy hands me his basin and says "can you take this"? My mind must have been elsewhere cause when I uncovered it (he had put a towel over the basin), the smell hit me and I just about tossed my cookies. I left the basin there and hurried out into the hall and was dry heavin'.
    eww...It was the worst!
    -Russell
  14. by   shygirl
    Vomit does not bother me. We had this 84 year old patient, IDDM . he had gangrene of the foot and lower ankle. He was getting wet to dry dressing changes at first. Then his brilliant doctor decides to get panafil. The smell of the warm, moist gangrene smell is still in my nose even after 5 months YUK!!!

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