As an agency nurse doing the rounds of different hospitals and nursing homes, I frequently got annoyed at different pill crushing devices that did a less than adequate job. The worst were the screw-top jars which would give you carpel tunnel syndrome by the end of a busy shift. Next most useless was the plastic rod with a flexible plastic tip, like a crutch tip. There was too much flex in the tip and the top of the med cart was flexible too, so the nurses had to put the med cup against the concrete wall to get a good solid surface to pound against.
Eventually I got so fed up that I asked my husband to give me a very old-fashioned gift...a mortar and pestle. He got me a nice glass one, and even had my name engraved on the side. My pill-crushing woes became a thing of the past! Nothing I've ever found does as good a job as this time-honoured tool!
One night I was doing a shift on a busy medical ward at a hospital north of Toronto. I noticed a fist-sized rock sitting beside the sink near the med cart."What's that for?" I asked. "Is that your pet rock?"
"No, that's our pill crusher," one of the nurses responded. "You see, nearly all our meds are in bubble packs. We give 'em a few whacks with the rock, then dump them into the med cup!"
"And here I though MY pill crusher was old-fashioned," I said, showing her my mortar and pestle.
Crushing meds with a rock...I still chuckle every time I think about it. We really have gone back to the stone age!
[ June 16, 2001: Message edited by: Jay-Jay ]
Jun 16, '01
at home I use two teaspoons together to crush pills! Your right the ones that I have used at the hospital don't do the job
Jun 17, '01
I laughed out loud at that rock!!That is funny! I might try that on co-workers for a joke.I really enjoy that 20lb steel device that has the arm that goes up and pounds the pills inside that little bowl at the bottom that is never big enough for a medicine cup to fit in.Or, you get a paper cup to fit in the little bowl, and since you are so stressed by that point, you pound that arm thing so hard on the pills that when you lift the arm to retrieve your paper cup full of crushed pills, you find only a pile of what looks like party confetti - remnince of your paper medicine cup mixed with what appears to slivers of ....ah, an enteric coated tablet?ooopppsss!
Jun 17, '01
Speaking of enteric coated tablets, I forgot to make mention of those doctors who are forever prescribing them for patients who have to have their meds crushed! They must have a sadistic streak...let's make life difficult for the nurses!
Jun 18, '01
nothing lke crushing a good old Darvocet N-100........and let us not forget everyones favorite....ZINC
Jun 19, '01
I did staff relief in a LTC and when I asked for a crusher they handed me a hammer, not a tack hammer,a big ugly hammer.