Your worst mistake - page 3

Here's mine: I was working a night shift, which to this day I truly detest. When I got report, I found I had a patient in acute alcohol withdrawal (which in and of itself makes me furious,... Read More

  1. by   Rustyhammer
    We have ALL made mistakes. Get plenty of rest before work and don't work at anyone elses pace. You know what you can do and what your safe speed is. I also agree it's better to fess up when you make that error. I've (and you have too) known nurses that don't fess up and hope for the best. Not a good idea.
    -R
  2. by   jkaee
    Quote from 3rdShiftGuy

    I'm shivering remembering these horrors. I've learned that no matter how busy and frazzled I am, never ever ever ever let your guard down.

    I shiver, too, when I think of my big mistake.....

    I used to work on a very busy sub-acute/rehab/vent unit. I had 16 pts....3 on vents, 2 trachs and about 3 GT's. There was a very brittle diabetic on my assignment. Now, day shift always gave out the AM insulins, but very rarely if night shift was quiet, they would give them out right before report, since day shift started out so hectic. They would ALWAYS tell us when they gave out the insulins. (you see where I'm headed, right??)

    Of course, it was a hellish morning....the vent patients needed adjustments, my trach pts needed suctioning.....the breakfast trays were coming and I didn't even get near my med cart yet. I decided to quickly give this woman her insulin before she got breakfast, since it was imperative in her case that she got her insulin before she ate. Well, I gave it, and went to sign it out......and night shift had already given it. They didn't tell us that during report.

    Quickly I told my other nurse that night shift already gave out the insulins so she didn't make the same mistake, told my super and called the doc. Of course, the pt. bottomed out and needed IV Glucogon, but we managed the situation without any long term effects to the patient. I was such a wreck that day.

    A mistake that was EXTREMELY preventable.......you are told over and over again in school to check and double check....but when you are in the "real world" of nursing, it's easy to get so busy and frazzled that you just don't do all the things you're taught. But, I learned, and I can tell you that I have never, and never will, make a mistake like that again. Too scary when I think of what could have happened.
    Last edit by jkaee on Apr 4, '04 : Reason: just got off a shift therefore can't spell
  3. by   MsHB
    nurse1975 25

    You poor thing, it sounds like you have had a very bad time of it.

    I was wondering how long ago your "experience" happened? And what are you doing with your time if you are not working as RN?

    Ms HB
  4. by   mattsmom81
    Hugs to all nurses. Sometimes the hardest thing is forgiving ourselves...but we are all very human and perfection is not an option. Something many facilities and managers seem to dispute.
  5. by   reyna
    my biggest mistake was...going to nursing school just kidding
  6. by   Agnus
    I'm having anxiety attacks just reading these.
    My biggest thing is we are so poorly staffed when you consider what can easily go wrong with one patient. Or even God forbid more than one. I gotta stop this I am in such a panic now.
  7. by   hotmama
    The unit I work on is a oncology unit, although we also get medical pts as well. We had a new RN that had been pulled from another floor on night shift, and she was assigned a pt who had been on our floor 2 days. This pt was in for etoh abuse, and had been going through DT's, and was recieving ativan iv. He had not slept for days. The nurse also had a ca pt who was receiving dilaudid for pain control. She had drawn up in two syringes the ativan and dilaudid to save time, and gave the dilaudid to the etoh pt by mistake. The pt went out, but was breathing. All night the pt slept, and the nurse didn't take vitals or disturb the pt because the charge nurse on nights told her to not disturb him since he had not slept in days. The new rn had tried to wake him, but he would not wake up. When The narcotic count was being done, it was discovered that the nurse had given the wrong med to the wrong pt. Still no one checked on this pt. When we got out of report for day shift, I went in to assess this pt and I could not wake him up, not knowing what had happened on night shift because it was not passed on in report and the night nurses had already left, The pt sat was in the 50's, and had probably been there for a long time. The New rn, and the assistant nurse manager both lost their license. The pt is a vegtable still in our hospital, not on our floor of course.
  8. by   RNKITTY04
    OMG Whata nightmare!
  9. by   Tweety
    Quote from hotmama
    The New rn, and the assistant nurse manager both lost their license. The pt is a vegtable still in our hospital, not on our floor of course.

    Yikes. What a nightmare indeed. Question, why did the assistant nurse manager loose his/her license?
  10. by   ?burntout
    Quote from hotmama
    The unit I work on is a oncology unit, although we also get medical pts as well. We had a new RN that had been pulled from another floor on night shift, and she was assigned a pt who had been on our floor 2 days. This pt was in for etoh abuse, and had been going through DT's, and was recieving ativan iv. He had not slept for days. The nurse also had a ca pt who was receiving dilaudid for pain control. She had drawn up in two syringes the ativan and dilaudid to save time, and gave the dilaudid to the etoh pt by mistake. The pt went out, but was breathing. All night the pt slept, and the nurse didn't take vitals or disturb the pt because the charge nurse on nights told her to not disturb him since he had not slept in days. The new rn had tried to wake him, but he would not wake up. When The narcotic count was being done, it was discovered that the nurse had given the wrong med to the wrong pt. Still no one checked on this pt. When we got out of report for day shift, I went in to assess this pt and I could not wake him up, not knowing what had happened on night shift because it was not passed on in report and the night nurses had already left, The pt sat was in the 50's, and had probably been there for a long time. The New rn, and the assistant nurse manager both lost their license. The pt is a vegtable still in our hospital, not on our floor of course.
    :stone :uhoh21:
  11. by   ?burntout
    I know I've made mistakes. I can't recall my worst one at the moment.

    I really do not like the days I go home wondering if I did this or that...those are the days that scare me. :stone
  12. by   LPN2BSN
    i was working ltc and we had just got this elderly couple. the man was very very aggitated. he drew back like he was going to hit me. i place a call to his doctor (without pulling the chart) and his usual dr. was out of town so i got the dr. on call. i told him what was going on with the elder and he tells me to give him 1mg of ativan po now. i call the rn supervisor and get the ativan, take it back to him, he takes it, and i go to write the order. when i pull the chart, in big red letters is allergy: ativan i called the dr. back and ask him for something else...he gives me an order for a non-narc. med. i go to the nurse i am working with, i feel hot and sweaty and on the verge of vomiting, i become hysterical and she tells me "sweety, we'll fix this...come with me" so we look up how it effected the elder (gave him heartburn) and she tells me that we will keep it quiet just to watch him. he did become very very sleepy...but he did sleep through the night and felt better the next day. i learned very very quickly to ctcfa...(check the chart for allergies)
    i still feel guilty about that.
  13. by   MandyInMS
    Quote from mattsmom81
    Hugs to all nurses. Sometimes the hardest thing is forgiving ourselves...but we are all very human and perfection is not an option. Something many facilities and managers seem to dispute.
    That is SOOOO true...no one can be any harder than we are on ourselves.

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