Essential Tremor - Page 2Register Today!
- Jan 15, '11 by shakyinohioHi everyone:
I am a 43 year old male with ET. I used to be on meds but stopped due to no insurance. I am starting my pre-reqs for nursing and although my tremor is mild still I have been wondering if I should peruse a career in nursing. I am worried about being able to draw blood or put in IV's. I can't help but wonder if employers will hire me due to my ET. What do you think? Should I pursue a nursing career? I'm presently a CNA and an AMAP and my ET doesn't interfere with my job. Thanks.
- Mar 5, '11 by The-Duece-Is-LooseHey, Mark! I have dealt with ET my entire life and am quite happy to report I am in my 16th year as an RN. In fact, the past ten years have been spent in a Hemodialysis unit in which I spend the majority of the day cannulating patients with 15g, 1 inch needles. Many have wondered why any patient in their right mind would allow me near them bearing a needle with such tremulous hands! First of all, after having been on the unit for ten years, I am fairly confident and rarely get nervous. When I do, biofeedback helps ALOT. Secondly, I always make sure I have stable blood sugar levels and don't over do the caffeine. Finally, I have found I can minimize a majority of the tremors by resting my pinky on the patient while I advance the needle using my thumb and forefinger. The same technique works for injections. (Side note, one patient with a significant amount of scar tissue over his fistula is always happy to have me cannulate him. He has nicknamed me "The Jackhammer" and believes the tremors help to advance the needle through his toughened skin with less pain than when the other non ET nurses do it!)
- Mar 16, '11 by Kooky KorkyQuote from IddunaA hearty hug and kudos for keepin' on keepin' on!I'm glad to see I'm not alone. I have had ET since I was a child and it has always affected my life, mostly with people asking me why I'm so nervous. When I went to nursing school, I realized I would have to go on medication. I was unable to use inderal, because it was making my asthma worse, so I went on mysoline. I'm now up to 250 mg BID. I have become use to it and don't experience any side effects, but my tremor continues, especially when I'm rushing around (like we nurses do a lot) or when my body is stressed out (like I haven't eaten or slept well). I feel very sensitive to people's comments. My tremor is very fine now, but people will still notice. I have developed a system where I do most of my tasks that require fine motor skills with one hand (like drawing blood or starting IVs) but I am still really effected by this condition. Has anyone noticed problems with focus or memory with this condition?
- Sep 18, '11 by ugadawg1696I have had shaky hands since I was a child. My sister and my dad both have it too. After doing some research, I've decided it sounds a lot like ET. I also have ADD and take Adderall everyday, which I know doesn't help with the shaking. I am in my last semester of nursing school, and am doing my practicum in the ER. I also have bad social anxiety, so I think it may be the mixture of anxiety, meds, fast paced environment, and my normal shakiness that makes it so much worse. The patients have started to notice it and ask me why I am so nervous or why am I shaking. I never really know what to say, other than it's a problem I've had since I was a child. I'm really self conscious about it, and I hate it when people point it out. Someone mentioned Biofeedback in a previous post. My doctor recommended I do this and has given me the contact info for a doctor who does it in my area. I just need to set the appointment up. But can anyone tell me what biofeedback exactly is? And do you really think it will help me with my anxiety? Thank you!
- Sep 27, '11 by prepcubI totally understand where you are coming from. New grad here and worried about it. Clinicals had a few issues but now that I am able to do the real thing I am worried. Like ugadawg, I don't know what to say and now I'm worried it's affecting me in job interviews because it gets worse with anxiety, etc. I take Primidone 200 mg a day without much help, tried Propranolol but didn't help much either. I take Klonopin as a "breakthrough" anxiety stop gap but that even at times doesn't help.
There is an organization for it: http://www.essentialtremor.org/
And a Facebook page which is pretty supportive.
Any other ideas on how to reduce this with patients/nurses/doctors and also what to say to patients is greatly appreciated.
- Sep 28, '11 by jadelpnMy mother has ET, where just her head shakes. Where it is hereditary, I am sure it will only be a matter of time....
In any event, research botox--apparently, it paralyzes the muscle and therfore, stops tremors.
- Nov 6, '11 by DCL_RNHi Guys,
I'm a nurse too. During my clinical practice people notice that my hands is shaking. I just ignore it because I thought maybe I was just nervous doing clinical procedure. But my other people notice that my hands is shaking even when i'm eating, holding something. I want to seek doctor advise now. Because I believe it's affecting my work now, I want to take medicine, because i notice that my shaking is now getting worse, even when i'm just lying on bed i feel that my hands and body is trembling. also when i'm speaking. Some of friends making fun of it. They call me "shaking lips" or "twisting face". I feel so depress about it. Need to find a good doctor. I hope you guy's can help me.
- Jan 23, '12 by FLnurseLCJOlder topic but I wanted to comment to anyone concerned that they can not be a successful nurse with essential tremors. I was diagnosed with this condition in high school, as well as narcolepsy, and i have never let either stop me from working the field. I take medication and drink lots of coffee r/t the narcolepsy, which does make me shake more, however, i have been a nurse for 6 years now and i havent let either get in the way. Fine motor skills are the most challenging, as most people have commented-iv insertions. First thing is anxiety will cause you to shake more! And it really dose take a lot of experience before you become comfortable with this skill...new nurses without ET shake often when trying! But as far as dealing with it....placing your hands/body in a dependent position (which nurses ofter do with patients, slumping over the bed), makes them worse. Always work at level with the pt. I have had days where my ET is worse than others, if i am shaking really bad and do not feel comfortable sticking a pt..i dont! I ask another nurse to help me! And this has never been a problem. Ive also had pts tell me they dont feel comfortable with me sticking them because im shaking. I don't explain ET to them, i simply have someone else help as well. Ive also have three different doctors at the hospital over the years volunteer a diagnosis of ET for me...haha. I know I have it. But just like any set back, there are ways to overcome it. And there is no reason why someone with ET can't be a nurse.