Nurses with disabilities - page 4

I am curious as to how many of the members of this bb are nurses or nursing students with disabilities. By disabilities, I am including congenital problems, injury-related problems, or work-related... Read More

  1. by   bestblondRN
    I find that prolonged standing or heavy pushing and lifting are my worst enemies and aggravate my back the most. I end up with back, but and leg pain that can be excruciating, not to mention the anterior numbness in my legs that is terribly annoying when it progresses to pins and needles. Stress doesn't seem to have too much to do with how my back feels, although I notice an increase in tension in my neck and upper back from time to time.

    For pain management, I take Aleve 660 mg. QD and on occasion, when the pain is really wicked, 2 Vicodin at HS. Hot baths and whirlpools also help alleviate the pain temporarily, as does forward bending and placing my foot on a step--alternating feet when the pain gets bad again. I guess this is a common thing with stenosis and neurogenic claudication. Walking is OK most of the time, as long as I keep moving.

    Thanks for the well wishes mattsmom! I am awaiting reference checks and a formal offer following that. Woo-hoo!!!!!! It'll be great to be employed again!
  2. by   angelbear
    My problems are not nearly as severe as most of yours. I have fibromyalgia, probable lupus, RLS and PLMD. I have had some neuro probs from all of this mostly from what they call the fibro fog. My coworkers so far have been pretty supportive. If I feel a bit foggy I will have my nursing partner double check me. I do have a question though. Are we required to report to the BON if we are on narcs chronically? If so will they take my license. What will happen? I do not take my narc pain killers while working but I do take an anticonvulsant classified as a narc. Am I working illegally. My employer is aware of my probs and my drugs.
  3. by   healingtouchRN
    Originally posted by renerian
    I still work but I am hearing impaired. Wear aides but sometimes I cannot hear the phone and need a hearing impaired phone which no one likes to get........

    renerian
    one of my best buddies @ work, Sandy, is hearing impaired, but only in certain frequencies. She has a hard time with normal speech & high pitches, but murmurs, & heart tones, she can hear fine! She wears her aides (after much coxing -years worth- to buy some) to work & they help alot. We have volume contol on our phones but I don't know how much it helps. i think it's great you work with the aides, I guess it's no different than me wearing my glasses! :kiss
  4. by   renerian
    I have had many older clients that say they cannot believe I was so young, had the aides since the age of 40, and wearing hearing aides. I could not believe what I missed without them. Just like when you get new glasses. Everything is so clear and crisp.

    renerian
  5. by   mattsmom81
    Originally posted by angelbear
    My problems are not nearly as severe as most of yours. I have fibromyalgia, probable lupus, RLS and PLMD. I have had some neuro probs from all of this mostly from what they call the fibro fog. My coworkers so far have been pretty supportive. If I feel a bit foggy I will have my nursing partner double check me. I do have a question though. Are we required to report to the BON if we are on narcs chronically? If so will they take my license. What will happen? I do not take my narc pain killers while working but I do take an anticonvulsant classified as a narc. Am I working illegally. My employer is aware of my probs and my drugs.
    So far it seems like your workplace is accomodating you, and I'm glad for you. These stories are great to hear!!!

    Let me play devil's advocate a minute:
    While you are not 'illegal', (you do have prescriptions), fibro 'fog' could be seen as a risk to patient care (that's how the BON or administration could see it)

    Perhaps you work with a stellar group who wants to keep you and if so you are indeed fortunate...I wish you well and hope your health problems come under control for you!!!
  6. by   Disablednurse
    The board of nursing in my state, has in its regulations that you are not to work under the influence of narcotics or mind altering drugs. If you make a mistake, you could lose your license.
  7. by   kidnurse57
    Is this the broken nurses club? I need to join! I was in a hurry to pull a patient up in bed one day 7 years ago, so I did it by myself. Hello, BIG mistake. Thanks to a wonderful manager, I'm working under a modified job description with a 25# lift limit. They pay me to think, not to grunt. I still have pain every day, but at least I'm functional. Thank God I like my job because I doubt that I could get hired anywhere else.
  8. by   angelbear
    Mattsmom I dont think you are being devil;s advocate I think you are absolutely correct it could be a danger to pts. I have only had it happen a couple of times and both times I let my nurse partner know and she shadowed me to insure that no mistakes were made. The med I take chronically at work is an anticonvulsant though it is still a controlled drug. However I am at leaste in my oppinion an ethical nurse and if I ever felt I could not give proper care I would not hesitate to call my nurse manager. I would not want an impaired nurse caring for me or one of my loved ones so I would not care for someone if I felt impaired. Yes you are right I am very fortunate in that my bosses and coworkers are wonderfully supportive of me.
  9. by   mattsmom81
    I know of a nurse who works (I think it is Florida) home health on a Duragesic patch for chronic pain due to GI adhesions. She was able to show she had acclimated to the drug and was NOT 'under the influence'. It controlled her pain so she could work.

    This story gave me hope....if a nurse can prove the med is for symptom relief and does NOT impair, she/he has a chance to continue gainful employment. I think this is only fair and I applaud state BON's and administrations that support this.
  10. by   Sharon
    Anglebear,

    I did not look to see were you are from, but it will determine on two things. The first is your own BON regulations which others have mentioned. Normally BON's are not concerned for long time users prescribed for chronic pain. Like all other drugs, you will develop a tolerance for the ability of the drug to alter your cognitive abilities. The second is have you developed that tolerance yet. I have worked with nurses, law enforcement officers, and fire personnel on chronic pain control. It all depends on where your cognitive abilities are.
  11. by   angelbear
    Yes I have become accustomed to the meds I do not take the pain narcs while at work. So far it has not become a problem and I hope to get my rn so I have more nursing options before it does become a problem on the floor. Ohio by the way.
  12. by   Disablednurse
    I got some good news today, I was given my disability back to the date that I was unable to work in December of 2001. I am so happy and can stop worrying so much. It sure does take a load off my mind.
  13. by   pickledpepperRN
    Disablednurse:
    Finally! You at least need an income.

    I'm very fortunate. I've not injured my back in 30 years of nursing. Had a shoulder injury from an accident. Hospital just glad it wasn't workmens comp. Off four months. Hurt the other side 3 years later. Kept working by paying an orthopod for the 1st visit instead of waiting for the HMO authorization.

    Great nursing coworkers becaiuse I work in ICU with adultd. Sometimes we all have 200- 300 pound immobile ventilated patients. I can go to the 'pulling toward me' side OK thanks to PT and daily workouts. The 'toward you' side is impossible.

    I work registry and have never been made a 'Do not Send' when the other staff member has to go to one side of the bed.

    Osteoarthritis at old injury sites and neck has me taking naproxen on work days.
    If I were young with a back injury I would learn NICU.
    There should be 'lift teams' of strong young people to help our aging nurses. Used to have 'orderleys' and a 'night man'
    I saw an ad with two young men who looked like bodybuilders in scrubs to recruit licensed nurses.

    Kaiser has 'telephone advice nurses'. One has MS and uses a wheelchair.

    For others I an VERY GLAD to work and pay taxes so nurses who need it can have a decent income and healthcare! I's better to support a malingerer than deny a deserving person. Just my opinion.
    Jus read the stories here to be inspired.
    Thank you all!

    Bless you all. Nurses are a great bunch. We should hav

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