tell me about your brainless moments

  1. we all have them, and apparently mine is such a doozy that i now tell it to the new staff to make them feel better when they're feeling cruddy for doing something silly.

    the day after my work christmas party, i was at work, a little worse for wear, as were my colleagues.

    i had a plastics case - i scrubbed, entered the theatre, dried my hands and began to set up my trolley, i'd probably been in the room a couple of minutes, organising my stuff when i realised that i wasn't wearing a gown or gloves and nobody had noticed.

    please, spill yours.
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    About goats'r'us

    Joined: Oct '02; Posts: 361; Likes: 197
    registered nurse


  3. by   NP Sam
    I am brand new to the OR, I just wanted to subscribe and hear the replies!!
  4. by   3PRN
    Twenty years ago, small, rural hospital and new to ICU.
    Pt. admitted for pain control with epidural drip.
    All through the night shift I was in the room titrating
    up and down depending on his level of pain.
    At one point, there was hardly any medication going
    at all because he had such good pain relief.
    The MD came in at 0730 and discharged the pt. because
    his pain level was zero.
    The pt. also gave kudos to the nurse (me) who was by
    his side all night managing his pain so expertly.
    I went into the room to discontinue the epidural. I followed the
    tubing from the pump to his back and saw to my horror that
    the tubing was not in his back and had never been in his back, as
    there was a large puddle of IV medication on the floor behind the
    head of the bed where the tubing was swaying in the air.
  5. by   LobotRN
    OMGoodness! I did a similar thing recently! Pt w/ a PCA, pain not well controlled, traced the lines to the pt, all looks good, no s/s of infiltration, can't get a handle on it, unit is powered on, cartridge in place. Finally call my "go to" and whatta ya know? The cord for the PCA button is not fully seated in the back of the unit. Poor pt was pressing the button, but it didn't activate anything. If only I'd known sooner (yeah, now I look at demands and delivers and look for the "red moving lights" to be sure, you betcha!). But then again, this was solved within 90 minutes of coming to the floor post surgery. I felt like the stupidest nurse EVER. And that patient wrote on the survey, "so-and-so was born to be a nurse, she made me feel better." Go figure!
  6. by   HDHRN
    Hello! I have a good one for you guys. I am an LPN on AL unit. We don't have a 3rd shift nurse so when 2nd shift leaves (that's me ) we count the narcs with the skilled side RN charge nurse and hand them the keys and they keep them until our 1st shift nurse comes in the next morning. Well last night I took the keys home with me and did not realize it! I went to bed about 11p and turned my phone off. Got up about 6 to use the bathroom and check my phone. I had three vms from my work wondering where the keys were. I ran out to the kitchen and checked my jacket pocket and they were in there, I felt so stupid! So I called and told them I was on the way over. Luckily I am only 5 min away. At least they got them back. That's the first (and hopefully) last time I will do that, but hey it makes for a good story
  7. by   LobotRN
    Oh, wait! Here's a goodie! and it happened last shift! So I have an AOx1 (self, maybe oriented to location) LOL who is just dry as can be in her mouth and on her lips. IV fluids going, able to drink water. Added a bubbler to her O2, provided frequent water soluble lip/mouth moisturizer, lots of sips of water. She had a little incontinent episode and her skin is pretty friable. So CNA and I clean and slather her up about an hour before shift change. Guess who left the tube of "butt balm" on the overbed table,and guess who decided to use it on herself? Thank goodness there was only a tiny tiny bit left in the tube, and she didn't have the strength to get it on too thick. D'oH! Egads......
  8. by   november17
    I was going into the pyxis to get 4mg of morphine. The pyxis asked me how many I wanted. I typed in 4. It gave me four 4mg doses...i had to return three of them...bleh.
  9. by   skrn68
    I am night shift supervisor, and had to stay over on an unfamiliar hall until the day shift nurse who called in could be replaced. I was trying to be helpful and pass some morning meds for the day shift. I had a g-tube pt., and was attempting in vain for several minutes to flush her tube..I thought good lord this is really clogged..then I looked and realized the end of the tube was capped off! Another time I went to give Guafenisin and shook up the bottle, not realizing the lid was not screwed on..needless to say, I was wearing quite a bit of it!!
  10. by   Scrubby
    I scrubbed for a fairly routine lap procedure and both myself and the circulating nurse forgot to do a final count until the patient was out of the theatre. Nothing was missing or anything as it was a lap case but it was pretty embarrassing.
  11. by   ChristineAdrianaRN
    I have rolled patients into the PACU and forgotten to call and tell them we were coming, and of course they made me feel like crap about it.

    My biggest screw up may be when I turbined a head and clipped it with a towel clip and found out at the end of the case I got a piece of his skin in it. Whoops. There was a nice purple bruise there. Apparently the family was fine with it ("He's a toddler, he gets bruises all the time."), but I felt awful. Didn't help that the doctor told the family that "what the nurse did is going to hurt worse than my surgery." Was that really necessary? Sigh.
  12. by   ChristineAdrianaRN
    Oh, and similar to the OP, I've gone and scrubbed, gowned, and gloved, only to realize I didn't have my mask up. D'oh! Luckily someone put it on for me so I didn't have to re-scrub, but I definitely felt like a doofus.
  13. by   gobluern
    I was prepping an abdomen. I had sterile gloves on and the st asked me to dance. I said I can't because I'm sterile. Doh!!
  14. by   CIRQL8
    I have had many brainless moments. Went to lunch. Didn't realize mask was still on until I tried to eat. Entered the OR many times with no mask without realizing it. Left room to get something the scrub asked for. By the time I got to the storage area forgot what I was going for. I have blanked out on surgeons' names. Staff names, etc. and so many more thing that I just cannot remember right now. If haven't had a brainless moment, you haven't been in the OR (or in nursing) long enough.