What is the grossest thing you have encountered in clinicals? - page 2

Thought this would be an interesting thread to start to give new students the "harsh reality" :rotfl: of what to expect as we enter our first semester.... Read More

  1. by   shortsteph12
    I was in my second clinical on the oncology floor. This poor woman had a wound on her bottem that went from her rectum to right below her urethra. The RN on night duty said in report that it was the worst thing that she had seen in 16 years of nursing. Needless to say she was my patient. I went in and assisted the RN on duty in changing her dressing. It was so bad the RN had tears running down her face. She had given the patient Morophine for pain and the patient was still moaning and groaning. Then the RN did a great thing by calling in the family, doctors, hospital social worker, and chaplian to decide what would be the best thing to do for this patient. Because she was eating food, when we walked in the room a family member was shoving a bismark down her throat. That as long as there was BM it would never heal. So it was decided to put a colostomy in, so that the wound could heal a bit,. And reduce the patients pain and suffering. This RN did a great thing, and I got a great lesson by being included in sitting in on the meeting. About being a patient advocate. Here is an example of a RN making a difference in someones life.
  2. by   Jen2
    Took off a dressing and a toe fell off.

    A fistula that came out of a womens navel who was about 400 lbs that constantly leaked stool.

    The thing that grossed me out the most was when I took out my very first patients dentures to provide mouth care and the gunk clogged the sink. This woman had been in the hospital for two weeks and no one provided mouth care to her. Dry heaves and all (she didn't hear me), she was so grateful that I took the time to do this.
  3. by   z's playa
    Quote from sagarcia210
    This didn't happen in clinicals, but in a rehab unit that I worked on several years back.
    We had an older woman who was German, spoke only German, and wanted desperatly to go back to Germany. Her son had brought her to Ohio and would not take her back. We had this woman on suicide precautions because she was so desperate to not be anywhere but Germany. Someone, we think her son, got the bright idea to give her her knitting supplies, which have... knitting needles!!! I just came on duty, was told she was good. I went to check her, and there she lay, both wrists butchered from the knitting needles. The amount of blood was horrendous. it was everywhere in the room. There was not a spot anywhere in the room that did not have blood on it.
    The doc said that she had less than a pint left in her. Of course she died. The son was eventually charged with giving her a "weapon", and of course the facility was fined BIG time, the nurse that gave the report that the patient was good lost her license for failure to assess the client, and new rules were put in policy about visitors could not take anything into the suicidal patient rooms.
    It was tragic.
    How horrible for all involved.

    I was surprised that new rules were put in place after the incident. I thought these rules were everywhere already.

    I hope this doesn't make me a horrible person but I feel anger towards the pt that comitted suicide. Look at the trouble she caused. Her own son charged, a nurse's career over and basic "issues" for everyone who had to clean it up.

    Guess psych isn't for me.
  4. by   smk1
    Quote from z's playa
    How horrible for all involved.

    I was surprised that new rules were put in place after the incident. I thought these rules were everywhere already.

    I hope this doesn't make me a horrible person but I feel anger towards the pt that comitted suicide. Look at the trouble she caused. Her own son charged, a nurse's career over and basic "issues" for everyone who had to clean it up.

    Guess psych isn't for me.
    obviously i don't have all of the facts but, what if the RN assesed the patient 30 min before shift change report and the woman tried to committed suicide within that time frame? How close to report time is the last assessment supposed to be done? ( i am a student so asking all you nurses) I guess i am not quite sure why the nurse lost her license, you can't be everywhere all the time.....
  5. by   TweetiePieRN
    Grossest thing? HMMM. A man with a trach was coughing. He had misted O2 over his trach...well huge brownish stringy globs of mucus were spraying out of his trach opening. Got all over his gown, his 02 tubing. Thank goodness it never landed in my eye or in my mouth!!

    Another one: A patient was confused. This patient was inserting fingers into rectum and smearing the feces on his hands like lotion. I was horrified when I went in there to do my assessment on him. It's a good thing I wear gloves most of the time for anything. This same patient was trying to touch my face when I first went in there and was talking close to him (he was hard of hearing).
  6. by   z's playa
    Quote from smkoepke
    obviously i don't have all of the facts but, what if the RN assesed the patient 30 min before shift change report and the woman tried to committed suicide within that time frame? How close to report time is the last assessment supposed to be done? ( i am a student so asking all you nurses) I guess i am not quite sure why the nurse lost her license, you can't be everywhere all the time.....
    I'd like to know as well. Seems extreme to me. I would think assessing a suicidal pt is difficult seeing as one of the signs is unusual wellbeing right before the act. Mistakes are made aren't they? You shouldn't blame a nurse for not catching it. I'm sure she had a million things on the go. She should have been on a psych ward with a no sharps rule in place. It sounds like the hospital didn't want to take responsibility and needed a scapegoat.

    Could be wrong.

    Back to grossest stuff ever seen.
  7. by   HisTreasure
    Student nurse suddenly rethinking this whole nurse career thing... It's something I want to do with all my heart, and I do believe it is my spiritual calling, but reading these posts is kinda turning my stomach. I truly feel so sick, my menstrual self just put down my bag of peanut M&Ms :uhoh21:
  8. by   SthRNBelle
    The grossest thing I saw was while I was in nursing school in our OB rotation. The doctor that was delivering this lady was a woman doctor and she was quite unique. She never wore anything to cover up. Never wore the gown, or mask or anything and wore birkenstock sandals everyday. So....this lady is pushing, pushing, pushing, and finally the head comes out. And when it does, so does amniotic fluid and it goes everywhere...even in the doctors mouth. So instead of spitting, vomiting, or trying to wipe her mouth clean, she says "yum...yum...yum..." and smacks her lips together like it was the best dessert she had ever had. I had to hold back the gagging....it was disgusting. And needless to say...OB really wasn't my idea of a good time. :chuckle
  9. by   unknown99
    Quote from smkoepke
    obviously i don't have all of the facts but, what if the RN assesed the patient 30 min before shift change report and the woman tried to committed suicide within that time frame? How close to report time is the last assessment supposed to be done? ( i am a student so asking all you nurses) I guess i am not quite sure why the nurse lost her license, you can't be everywhere all the time.....
    The routine was to do spot checks 15 minutes prior to report.
    I do not know what the rules are now. This happened over 13 years ago.
    If I believe right, the son fought the charge and won.
    The nurse ended up losing her license because it was found that she did not do the spot check. How this was proven, I do not know; no one ever said.
    I know, we cannot be everywhere all the time. Wish we could!!! Things like that may not happen! I quit working there not too long after that because the management refused to listen that we needed more help.
    The place has since shut down.
  10. by   #1rnstudent
    I have to second that C-diff is the foulest thing I have ever encountered. Before, I could handle the whole poop thing but ever since I got a whiff of C-diff poop, I am fighting dry heaves all the time.
  11. by   nurseshanti
    Some of these are really gross!!

    The only thing I've encountered so far in clinical that I've actually gagged over (and had to leave the patient temporarily to busy myself at the sink cleaning something out because I didn't want to gag and retch in front of him) was mouth care on a trach patient. This patient had frontal lobe injuries due to a gunshot wound to his face and really really didn't like anyone touching his face, so I always started out mouth care with him doing it and me observing and then I took over to get the rest. Well, I don't know how long ago he'd had mouth care done because he kept pulling out with the toothette these long strings of thick foul-smelling mucus. It was really gross.

    Other things that I've seen that were gross but that didn't make me gag are:

    An infected diabetic foot ulcer that had been festering for months and had completely eaten away the patient's heel so that you could see the ankle bone. It was a huge crater where the heel was supposed to have been.

    Once when I was observing in the OR during my maternity rotation, I saw the c-section delivery of 26 week twins. The amniotic fluid had been leaking from one of their sacs for about 2 weeks previous and of course the mother had a huge infection by now. When the doctor opened her up, the foul smell that came out of her uterus was overpowering. And the twins were like smaller than the palm of my hand. That was also the only time I've come home from clinicals and bawled my eyes out. It was quite emotionally draining to witness.
  12. by   julieftRN
    Quote from TweetiePieRN
    Grossest thing? HMMM. A man with a trach was coughing. He had misted O2 over his trach...well huge brownish stringy globs of mucus were spraying out of his trach opening. Got all over his gown, his 02 tubing. Thank goodness it never landed in my eye or in my mouth!!

    Another one: A patient was confused. This patient was inserting fingers into rectum and smearing the feces on his hands like lotion. I was horrified when I went in there to do my assessment on him. It's a good thing I wear gloves most of the time for anything. This same patient was trying to touch my face when I first went in there and was talking close to him (he was hard of hearing).


    That is terrible!!!!
  13. by   TweetiePieRN
    Quote from julieftRN
    That is terrible!!!!
    It really was!! And to top it all off, this man touches his phone, remote control, bed rail and everything. So I had to warn everyone who went in there to glove up!

close