Hi. I don't post here often but I'm a PCT on a med-surg floor. I'm supposed to start my nursing program soon for Fall 2012. I was doing my rounds on my patients when I decided to check on this particular patient who wasn't feeling too well(vomiting alot). I checked on him often throughout this morning, trying to reassure him the nurse was going to give him some medication and maybe he could drink some water since he can't tolerate any of the clear liquids I tried to bring him. Anyway, I go in the room to check on him and just didn't look right
. I can't really explain it(I know you're thinking-yea, duh guy is dead). So I start looking at him more closely for chest rising-nothing. I walk up to him and touch for his carotid pulse-nothing! Then, I start shaking him and yelling his name. So I then I panic and push down the CPR button on the bed, which makes his head drop rapidly(that would wake anyone up if they weren't dead!).
Meanwhile, I press the staff emergency button and call my nurse with my phone. She rushes over and starts yelling his name and shaking him. Once she tells me to call the charge nurse and says "omg", I realize that I'm having a code on this floor on my patient who was just normal, alert, and oriented. We were just joking a few minutes ago! So she freaks out and I freak out in the sense that she's trying to push the code button(but you have to pull, not push!), the charge nurse runs in and starts yelling for the crash cart. All I hear is yelling for the crash cart and I just ripped off the patient's gown and started compressions. So, I'm doing them(about 60-30 apart), still not believing this is actually happening. The crash cart gets to the room, and my nurse takes over the compressions.
I get out of the room to make room and RT and other people(doctors, code team, etc..,) comes in and I go back in and they start yelling for stuff like O2 connectors, suction tubing, etc.., I'm running back and forth to the supply room, grabbing stuff and trying to connect it to the right place in the room. I'm so nervous doing this because I know every second counts! I just left the room after I realized all the professionals had it under control. On my way to the supply room, I see my nurse crying and trying to compose herself. So, I went into a private room and one of the nurses asked me if I was ok, I said no and had a good 3 minute cry.
Anyway, the patient was resuscitated. I went back in the room to watch the code even though I really didn't want to because it really hurt me to see him like that. But I told myself I should see how a code really works. The code lasted about 35 minutes. I assisted in getting his stuff together and making sure the vitals were in before he left. His vitals were normal except for a brief moment when he was sleeping his 02 levels were looking low, but he was snoring(i believe he has sleep apnea) while I was taking them and I know usually his 02 levels are normal. However, when he was eating breakfast and alert, the o2 levels were fine.
I thought he had maybe aspirated on his vomit. Turns out he had a massive PE(I still need to research that!)
It was a good learning experience but it was hard for me because it happened early morning and I had many more hours to go. It was obvious they weren't going to send me home still we were at almost full capacity on the floor. So, I just kept telling myself, after having another cry in the bathroom, to keep it moving because I still had other people who wanted things.
It was my nurse's first code too, which explains why she freaked out as much as I did. But everyone says I did fine, that thank goodness I kept checking on him. My charge nurse was pleased. I'm glad he's alive but I can't stop thinking if the code was a waste because he's only gonna die again because I people don't make it from PE's, especially one that size. But I'm also excited because I saw a code and it was just intriguing once I wasn't the one involved but watching...
The code started as chaos but it quickly got together.I didn't think I would've had to deal with this on med-surg and just the other day I was thinking if I could ever work ICU or ER as a nurse because I know they deal with codes alot.
I think what affected me the most is that the patient and I got along well and then BAM, gone.
I feel sort of bad for crying, but not many people saw me cry and I definitely tried to keep it together in that patient's room.
Any feedback would be great.