Five Star ICU Patients

  1. I saw where one of our members was complaining that although the ICU forum was very informative the ER forum had more funny stories so I thought I might kick off a thread for a little bit of light hearted humour.

    Now I have had some five star patients in the past - some of whom came with the BEST stories. Like the patient who was admitted for ?OD. The ambulance told us that his flatmates admitted that because he hadn't moved in a while they "thought he might be dead" so they waited for a couple of hours before they called the ambulance - amazingly he turned out OK.

    But one of my all time five star patients was the guy we had - past history of 70% of his life spent in jail for various drug abuse. Brought in with polypharmacy OD. We extubated him but he was diskinetic - arms and legs flailing and had the WORST verbal diarrhoea I have ever encountered. One of the few I have wanted to re-intubate within minutes of extubation - just to SHUT HIM UP!!!

    But what put him into the five star league was what he said.

    Sitting up "snorting" the O2 in the nasal prongs "Hey man! This is just like having some coke up my nose"

    Then holding his arm up

    "AAARRRGGGHHH!!! AAAAARRGGHH!!"

    Me: "What is the matter?"

    Him "Thats not my arm!!! Thats not my hand!!"

    Me(exasperated) "Well it's not mine!!"

    This time he lifts the sheet and

    "****!!! *****!!! "Someone's cut me **** off!!"

    Me: "No sir I think you will find, if you look, that your penis is still there between your legs!"

    Have you had any 5 star patients like this???
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  2. 19 Comments

  3. by   Ruby Vee
    Oh, yea. I've had a few five star patients.

    There was the one that came in for R/O MI every six months or so -- immediately after snorting coke. And every time, he claimed he'd been reformed -- he'd never snort it again. And six months later, there he'd be. He's made his last trip to the CCU, though. He had chest pain with radiation, etc. while showering. He collapsed, and yelled for his roommate to call an ambulance. Roomie did so, then (alledgedly) shot him up "because I knew he wasn't going to get anything for awhile in the HOSPITAL!" Damn straight! He survived the acute episode, but evidently it wasn't a clean needle that roomie used.

    Or the confused little old man that laid in bed all night screaming for help. Why is it that the first thing they do is strip naked? Then they remove their O2, lines, tubes, etc. This old guy got everything off but for some reason decided he really needed his sat probe. Busy with the code next door, I left him alone for all of 15 minutes. When I walked by his room on the way to get a central line kit or some such, I hear terrorized screams. "Help Help Help!!"
    "What's wrong, sir?"
    "I got my dick caught in a vise -- you'll have to cut it off!"
    And their was the sat probe, attached to the aforementioned member. When we showed it to him, his terror increased. "Oh, NO!" he moaned. "A snake's got it. I'm going to die!"

    You know, the penis is not really a good place for a sat probe -- the waveform sucks.
  4. by   versatile_kat
    During my first job in a surgical ICU I worked nights with some of the funniest nurses around. You know you can get away with a lot more on night shift ... and we usually did.

    Our unit had intercom's into each room for when the patient's called ... all you had to do was pick up a special phone out at the nurses station and talk to them to see what they wanted (granted, most of the patient's were intubated and sedated, but every once in a while we'd get a call). One night, the sweetest little old man (during the day) had the worst case of sundowners/ICU psychosis I've ever witnessed .. he kept yelling for the police, saying that we were trying to kill him, and eventually started calling for the FBI (of course after stripping himself naked).

    Well, at abour 4am, we were all tired of taking turns going in the room to settle him down. So one of the male nurses, Chris, gets on the intercom and calls into the room (the speaker box was located right above the head of the bed).

    "Sir, this is the FBI", Chris said, in his MOST professional voice.
    "The FBI? You have to help me!!! These people are trying to kill me!" little-old-crazy-naked-man yells.
    "Sir, we've been monitoring the situation and are on the way to the hospital now," Chris says.
    "Thank the lord!!!" says crazy-naked-man.
    "Now, it's improtant that you stay VERY quiet until we get there. We can't have the nurses suspect anything," says Chris.
    "I promise!!!! How long until you get here?"
    "We will be there promtly at 7:30am," Chris tells him.

    So for the next 3 and 1/2 hours, the patient sat quietly, watching the clock ...never making a sound. And what a beautiful sight it was, when day shift got on the unit, and he asked every one of them if they were with the FBI. He was transferred early that morning to the step-down floor .
    Last edit by versatile_kat on Jul 4, '04
  5. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from versatile_kat
    During my first job in a surgical ICU I worked nights with some of the funniest nurses around. You know you can get away with a lot more on night shift ... and we usually did.

    Our unit had intercom's into each room for when the patient's called ... all you had to do was pick up a special phone out at the nurses station and talk to them to see what they wanted (granted, most of the patient's were intubated and sedated, but every once in a while we'd get a call). One night, the sweetest little old man (during the day) had the worst case of sundowners/ICU psychosis I've ever witnessed .. he kept yelling for the police, saying that we were trying to kill him, and eventually started calling for the FBI (of course after stripping himself naked).

    Well, at abour 4am, we were all tired of taking turns going in the room to settle him down. So one of the male nurses, Chris, gets on the intercom and calls into the room (the speaker box was located right above the head of the bed).

    "Sir, this is the FBI", Chris said, in his MOST professional voice.
    "The FBI? You have to help me!!! These people are trying to kill me!" little-old-crazy-naked-man yells.
    "Sir, we've been monitoring the situation and are on the way to the hospital now," Chris says.
    "Thank the lord!!!" says crazy-naked-man.
    "Now, it's improtant that you stay VERY quiet until we get there. We can't have the nurses suspect anything," says Chris.
    "I promise!!!! How long until you get here?"
    "We will be there promtly at 7:30am," Chris tells him.

    So for the next 3 and 1/2 hours, the patient sat quietly, watching the clock ...never making a sound. And what a beautiful sight it was, when day shift got on the unit, and he asked every one of them if they were with the FBI. He was transferred early that morning to the step-down floor .
    That's even better than the nurse who calls into the room and tells the patient "This is God, and I want you to be quiet now."
  6. by   Audreyfay
    I LOVE your stories! Any more? I can't remember any funny ones recently.
  7. by   fergus51
    Bless you all for working with adults!!! I enjoy the stories and they remind me of why I like my patients too young to talk!
  8. by   Ruby Vee
    Hubby likes to say "My favorite patient is an intubated orphan with no friends." I think most of us like that from time to time.

    Before VADs, patients used to wait for transplants in the ICU on a balloon pump for months -- years even. We'd leave the balloon pump in until their numbers started getting better, then take it out for a few days and let them walk around, shower, whatever until they crapped out and we'd put the balloon pump back in.

    I'm not in favor of Swanned patients taking showers, but at the institution I was working in, they allowed that. So one evening, I'm taking care of the patient in the room across the hall from the shower, and another nurse came by with her patient, an armload of linen, etc. He got his balloon pump out at noon, now he can get up and walk and he wants to take a shower. She puts the patient in the shower room, instructing him to pull the cord (call light) if he needs any help, and walks away.

    I was going about my business in my patient's room, having forgotten about the patient in the shower across the hall when I slipped in something wet on the floor. In an ICU, you always wonder what made the wet -- is it my Epi drip NOT infusing into the patient? Blood? Urine (Foley bags have ?been known to leak)? I followed the puddle to it's point of origination -- across the hall, leaking out from under the shower room door. With visions of the patient down, occluding the floor drain, I yanked open the door only to find . . . . the patient, on his back with his butt occluding the floor drain with his naked wife on top of him, bouncing away. OOPS! :imbar :imbar
  9. by   Charlootle
    Ruby Vee that is shocking

    Charlotte x
  10. by   Celia M
    Ruby Vee,
    I guess your patient had a fairly decent cardiac output then!!!! :chuckle
  11. by   Bekahlynn
    Hi all!! I am a senior nursing student (finally) who works as a SNE/tech in a MSICU. We recently had a twenty something lady whose dx was acute pancreatitis. I go to her room to check her blood sugar.
    "I'm hungry, can I have something too eat" (of course she is NPO)
    "I am sorry but not until the doctor changes his orders"
    " I haven't eaten in 23 days"
    "Have you been ill that long?"
    "No, I have been on a 22 day drinking binge"
    No wonder she had AP!!
    She was saying all of this to me while sitting up spread eagle and stark naked in her bed, and would not stop picking at her skin. Later on that day her nurse asked me if I wanted to put a foley in. I need all the practice I can get so I jumped at the oppurtunity. Turns out pt X had pulled her foley out with the balloon still inflated. OUCH!! While i was reinserting the foley, i almost felt as if she were talking me through it.
    I later heard that a psych eval was ordered not long after...
  12. by   my2sons
    I recently had to consult a urologist for my 77 year old confused post-open heart. He unscrewed the air supply tube from his automatic non-invasive blood pressure cuff and connected it to the balloon inflation port of his foley catheter. The next time the NIBP cycled, the foley balloon blew up inside his bladder. He didn't feel a thing, just rang the call bell because his bed was wet. He needed a scope to retrieve a few shards of balloon left in his bladder. Things that make you go HMMMMMM....
  13. by   RuthieRN
    Quote from versatile_kat
    During my first job in a surgical ICU I worked nights with some of the funniest nurses around. You know you can get away with a lot more on night shift ... and we usually did.

    Our unit had intercom's into each room for when the patient's called ... all you had to do was pick up a special phone out at the nurses station and talk to them to see what they wanted (granted, most of the patient's were intubated and sedated, but every once in a while we'd get a call). One night, the sweetest little old man (during the day) had the worst case of sundowners/ICU psychosis I've ever witnessed .. he kept yelling for the police, saying that we were trying to kill him, and eventually started calling for the FBI (of course after stripping himself naked).

    Well, at abour 4am, we were all tired of taking turns going in the room to settle him down. So one of the male nurses, Chris, gets on the intercom and calls into the room (the speaker box was located right above the head of the bed).

    "Sir, this is the FBI", Chris said, in his MOST professional voice.
    "The FBI? You have to help me!!! These people are trying to kill me!" little-old-crazy-naked-man yells.
    "Sir, we've been monitoring the situation and are on the way to the hospital now," Chris says.
    "Thank the lord!!!" says crazy-naked-man.
    "Now, it's improtant that you stay VERY quiet until we get there. We can't have the nurses suspect anything," says Chris.
    "I promise!!!! How long until you get here?"
    "We will be there promtly at 7:30am," Chris tells him.

    So for the next 3 and 1/2 hours, the patient sat quietly, watching the clock ...never making a sound. And what a beautiful sight it was, when day shift got on the unit, and he asked every one of them if they were with the FBI. He was transferred early that morning to the step-down floor .
    OMG!!! I'll bet you guys were rolling on the floor, I know I was....thanks for the laugh!
  14. by   RuthieRN
    Quote from Ruby Vee
    Oh, yea. I've had a few five star patients.

    There was the one that came in for R/O MI every six months or so -- immediately after snorting coke. And every time, he claimed he'd been reformed -- he'd never snort it again. And six months later, there he'd be. He's made his last trip to the CCU, though. He had chest pain with radiation, etc. while showering. He collapsed, and yelled for his roommate to call an ambulance. Roomie did so, then (alledgedly) shot him up "because I knew he wasn't going to get anything for awhile in the HOSPITAL!" Damn straight! He survived the acute episode, but evidently it wasn't a clean needle that roomie used.

    Or the confused little old man that laid in bed all night screaming for help. Why is it that the first thing they do is strip naked? Then they remove their O2, lines, tubes, etc. This old guy got everything off but for some reason decided he really needed his sat probe. Busy with the code next door, I left him alone for all of 15 minutes. When I walked by his room on the way to get a central line kit or some such, I hear terrorized screams. "Help Help Help!!"
    "What's wrong, sir?"
    "I got my dick caught in a vise -- you'll have to cut it off!"
    And their was the sat probe, attached to the aforementioned member. When we showed it to him, his terror increased. "Oh, NO!" he moaned. "A snake's got it. I'm going to die!"

    You know, the penis is not really a good place for a sat probe -- the waveform sucks.
    What is it with confused little old men and the O2 sat probe? I had one ask the respiratory therapist (we were both at the bedside) "What would happen if you stuck that on my D***?" The repiratory therapist calmly replied "Well, I would have to wash it a whole bunch of times!" We got a good laugh out of that at the nurses station.

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