EKG on female patients - page 5

by bill4745 | 79,347 Views | 56 Comments

How do all of you do EKGs on female pts? I've been using a towel folded longwise to cover their breasts. My big concern is placing electrodes and connecting the leads when they are large and a bit saggy. Do you ask them to... Read More


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    Quote from 58flyer
    Thank You for your service. Sorry to hear they treat our veterans that way. What are your thoughts on the MEPS physical?
    I think the chest xrays at 17 yrs old, may well contribute to the fact that Female vets are twice as likely to get breast cancer.

    I do not know how they do it today; but decades ago the exam was humiliating and amounted to a violation of dignity and sexual harassment. But, then when you are 50+ you realize that was the least of the abuse to come.
  2. 2
    Sorry but gotta disagree with this. I'm a USN vet (female) and never had a CXR the entire time I was active duty. I was active duty from 77 to 80 and had wonderful care from several different providers. I then became a family member to another active duty member and have rec'd care in five countries and 8 states and nope, never had a bad experience. Sometimes experiences are what you make of them. It doesn't do anybody any good to only continually emphasize the negative.

    As to VA care, I can't speak to that as both hubby and I make too much money and don't qualify for care.

    Also - to above poster - can you please post your reference regarding female veterans being twice as likely as getting breast cancer?? Thanks.
    revsteelhead and TraumaNurseRN like this.
  3. 0
    " Sometimes experiences are what you make of them. It doesn't do anybody any good to only continually emphasize the negative."

    Hmmm.
    This statement says more about you than me. Just B.S. for rationalizing apathy, or a love of the status quo.
    Negation of a negative is a positive. That is, changing a wrong is right does us all good, save perhaps those benefiting from the wrong. You must be a Republican.
    I was answering a question about the exam; my concern with medical care is broader than an entrance physical. Just answering the question. I have always found that one who responds to one expressing an injustice, with will I have never been treated that way so it must be you, is well, like I said, your response indicated more about you than me.


    Regarding CXR USAF, '75, I remember b/c it was my first and I questioned the effects. It took some talking to get me to go along. Perhaps it was one of those lab rat things. It was the first but not the last. I had several more, plus other nuclear medial care.

    Not sure how you feel about sitting in a hall way in a paper gown with male recruits walking by, or having an exam while the door is open to the hall way, but I did not like it at all. But, I was not in it alone. Like I said, it was the least of the disrespect. None of us liked it.

    Also - to above poster - can you please post your reference regarding female veterans being twice as likely as getting breast cancer?? Thanks.[/quote]

    http://www.springerlink.com/content/n83j1g0322114892/

    I cannot find the orig. source but this refers w/a note, but w/o book I have not been able to find situation. I asked V.A. about this, they said, not sure why it is the case, but were aware of the research.
    Last edit by wymnwise on Sep 17, '08
  4. 0
    Quote from wymnwise
    " Sometimes experiences are what you make of them. It doesn't do anybody any good to only continually emphasize the negative."

    Hmmm.
    This statement says more about you than me. Just B.S. for rationalizing apathy, or a love of the status quo.
    Negation of a negative is a positive. That is, changing a wrong is right does us all good, save perhaps those benefiting from the wrong. You must be a Republican. <<<<<<<
    I was answering a question about the exam; my concern with medical care is broader than an entrance physical. Just answering the question. I have always found that one who responds to one expressing an injustice, with will I have never been treated that way so it must be you, is well, like I said, your response indicated more about you than me.


    Regarding CXR USAF, '75, I remember b/c it was my first and I questioned the effects. It took some talking to get me to go along. Perhaps it was one of those lab rat things. It was the first but not the last. I had several more, plus other nuclear medial care.

    Not sure how you feel about sitting in a hall way in a paper gown with male recruits walking by, or having an exam while the door is open to the hall way, but I did not like it at all. But, I was not in it alone. Like I said, it was the least of the disrespect. None of us liked it.

    Also - to above poster - can you please post your reference regarding female veterans being twice as likely as getting breast cancer?? Thanks.
    http://www.springerlink.com/content/n83j1g0322114892/

    I cannot find the orig. source but this refers w/a note, but w/o book I have not been able to find situation. I asked V.A. about this, they said, not sure why it is the case, but were aware of the research.[/quote]

    What????????????????
  5. 0
    I think we might just want to move on....as this poster seems to be looking for greener pastures too - lol.
  6. 0
    I close the door. I guess as you know there is hardly time to keep finding female employees to do ECG's on female pt's. If they wish to help that is great. Otherwise I think I just use my gloved wrist or hand to hold them up. Some pt's look uncomfortable so I ask if they want to help out holding and moving. If there is a lot of people in the room I try to cover her chest with a towel or sheet as long as I can still get a clean ECG tracing.
  7. 1
    well, as a female nurse I would be annoyed not that the male nurse would be asking for help when he needed it, but if he is taking the stance that since its an extra hassle and risk for a male nurse to do ekg's in females, he will just get female nurses to do ALL his female ekg's. My frustration here would be that since at least 60-70 percent of the time he would be asking for help, he could probably have done it himself no problem with patience and simple assessment of the client's comfort level. If i for instance felt uncomfortable droping NG tubes, it would NOT be tolerated for me to just say...im not going to take the risk of putting the tube in the lung so i will just get someone else to do these for me every time....

    BTW Kudos to male nurses for the all extra hard work it must take (yet equal pay as females) to be successful in a career where it is acceptable at times to be biased in favor of the famales. I dont believe that its healthy or normal for an industry to be totally dominated by one sex or the other. Especially since just to be a good nurse these days you have to be damn skilled, accomplished and competent to make it, regardless of sex.
    Last edit by Sehille4774 on Mar 15, '09
    dnp2004 likes this.
  8. 0
    I'm a woman, but I've never been uncomfortable with doing EKG's on women. I make small talk as I a working, putting on the leads. Lifting the breast on large breasted women is just part of the deal if you want an accurate EKG, I think the overwhelming majority of alert and oriented women of any age know that. If you've formed some measure of trust between you and the patient, they usually won't bat an eye at the procedure.

    I work with several male nurses who've never had a problem either. I really believe that if you approach it as a "no big deal" then the patient reads your comfort level, and they become relaxed if you are.

    Blessings
  9. 0
    TALK, TALK, TALK and keep the areolas covered with a gown, explain what and why you are doing it. I've never had a problem. They are just thankful to have someone helping them. I usually don't remember to give them a choice for a fe/male nurse, esp when another fe/male nurse is in the room helping me. You can discover a lot of history during the ECG process, diversion is a wonderful thing!

    I do work with an RN that refuses to perform ECGs on the ladies. It's more time consuming to argue/refuse/debate with peers. I think they respect me more for "jumping in there" vs the other route.
  10. 0
    My First Post_Taking my LPN boards next week @ 54 y.o. ....Having read some of the earlier posts on EKG's done by male providers on female patients I agree, there is alot of GOOD info available here.And what a great country were we can agree to disagree. Ladies ...It is DIFFERENT for a guy doing this on a female.When I was a Tech in the ED I quite inadvertantly (sp) discovered the back of the hand technique mentioned earlier by someone with more experience I'm sure, I used pillow cases and my docs weren't tolerant of bras...and as always simple ongoing explanations and looking for cues is a plus.I think as men in Nursing we have a huge perhaps greater responsibility to " DO THE RIGHT THING" the right way in situations such as these. Thanks.


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