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Any patients you couldn't stand et how did you deal?

Nurses   (3,636 Views 31 Comments)
by fultzymom fultzymom (Member)

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Have you ever had a patient that you felt was absolutely horrible to deal with et you cringed every time you had to take care of them? And if so, how did you deal with them et not show your feelings, if you were able not to?

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I did not go out of my way to do anything special for the obnoxious, nasty patients. If they went out of bounds, I reported their behavior and charted for purposes of protecting myself. Important thing is to realize when they are trying to antagonize you on purpose and avoid getting caught in any traps. The most obnoxious patients sometimes have family members who are good at threatening or actually making trouble for staff. I do what I have to do, as fast I can, and leave the room. Have been known to bring another staff member in to assist and act as a witness also.

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6,487 Posts; 21,382 Profile Views

OMG, yes!!!! Someone we all firmly believed was a Munchausen's but wasn't dx'd. He actually kissed me once and tried again several times after that. Manipulative as all get-out, exposed himself every chance he got, and once he infested a gurney and cubicle with fleas and we needed a terminal cleaning after he left. We finally got to the point where we took turns so no one person had him all the time, and if he needed an injection (usually the reason he came in) then we got a male nurse to do it if possible.

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scattycarrot has 10 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in ITU/Emergency.

357 Posts; 4,332 Profile Views

I have a feeling that someone will come on here and say that it doesn't matter who or what the person is you are looking after or how you feel about them, we are professionals and should treat everyone the same and you should never let your feelings show. Well, I am preempting them and I will respond and say, that while that is all true, it is also true that we as nurses, are human and not robots. We cannot help the way we feel and our feelings deserve recognition. You don't have to like all your pateints (and anyone who says they do is lying in my opinion!) but you do have to deal with them. The methods described earlier are perfect,eg..taking it in turns to look after the patient....I call it sharing the pain and most importantly, protecting yourself.As Caliotter3 says, deal with the pateint in pairs as patients who are obnoxious tend to complain and its good to have someone to say how a situation really went down. Also, document document document, everything! Generally, take a deep breath before entering the room and kill them(not literally of course!) with kindness and rise above it. Then, when you have left the room and are out of earshot call them whatever you want ....childish but oh so satisfying!

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Pepper The Cat has 33 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Gerontology.

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Take a deep breath and relax your tense muslces beforing entering the room Find something nice/tolerable about the person if you can. If you really don't like the person, find a nurse who does and trade patients. We've noticed that someone one nurse does not like does not bother another nurse. Be polite no matter what. Smile, smile, smile. I know thats hard but try it! And remember - everyone reacts differntly to being in hospital - someone people have a hard time giving up control of their lives to someone else - esp if that someone else is younger than them, so try and understand why they are behaving as they are. ( and yes, some people just have pickles up their a** and are jerks)

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tattooednursie is a LVN and specializes in Mostly LTC, some acute and some ER,.

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If they get nasty with me I just say, "Apparently you don't want my help. Ring your bel when you decide that you are going to be a little more decent toward me. I've had to swap patients too just because I have been at the breaking point where I knew I couldn't go in there and still be nice.

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XB9S has 22 years experience and specializes in Advanced Practice, surgery.

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The worst patient I remember (and there have been lots)

I went to take a blood sample from him, he had been in for a while and was a known IV drug user so I asked what he was like to bleed.

He dropped his pants and pointed to his penis with a big grin and told me that they were the best veins I just had to get it erect first

Uck

I just smiled at him looked and informed him if that was the best that he had there was very little I could do for him.

Only dealt him in the company of another member of staff after that

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645 Posts; 6,056 Profile Views

Nice to know that I am not the only one. I work in LTC et on our rehab unit we had a 37 year old who was addicted to Phenergan et Dilaudid. Her main problem was diabetes which was uncontrolled. She got gastroparesis et also had a cyst the size of a football removed from her kidney (that was years ago). And ever since that surgery she was on the drugs. We are talking like FIVE YEARS after that surgery she is still taking those meds! This woman was the master manipulator. Her orders were Dilaudid 2mg Q2HR et Phenergan 50mg Q4HR IVP!! They were PRN of course but you could set your watch by her. She would do what I call "drive bys" when it was 1/2 a hour till it was due. If you did not take that hint then she would send an aide after you before it was due to make sure it was not "late" as she called it. She got mad because other nurses started just taking it to her automatically and I would not. These nurses were so worried about it that they would wake her up it it was time she could have it again et give it. Why wake her if she is sleeping? I told her that it was PRN and if she needed it, she needed to let me know. She told her family three different times that I refused to give her meds to her when they were "scheduled" to be given. :angryfire Can't even tell you how many times we explained to her father that it was not scheduled. Her daddy believed anything that she said. The last time she did this to me, I started making her wait until there was another nurse there to watch me give it and witness/sign with me. That really burned her up. Wait time just got longer. Sorry. You did it to yourself. :lol2: Then she went to the DON and said, "I do not know why she does not like me. I never said those things to anyone about her. I will confront anyone who said that I did." DON looks at her et says, "Well then why don't you start with your mom. She's the one who told us." OOPS! :uhoh21: Finally got kicked out by Medicaid who found out that she had almost $20,00 in the bank from where she had filed for disability and won. :nono: I gues having to pay privately will get your butt well et going home. This woman was here for 1 1/2 years!! I was to the point that I told my employeers that I was getting ready to put in my 2 weeks notice. The only thing that kept me from doing it was the fact that I did not want to let her win.

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1,927 Posts; 14,514 Profile Views

Before going in I take a deep breath and a say a short prayer. Then I go in and do my job and say another prayer that I came out alive. If they make rude comments I ignore them. I try only to respond to positive behavior.

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Whenever I have to take care of a patient like that, I deal with it by thinking of myself as an "actress" for the day. My "role" is to be a good nurse to that patient, no matter how I feel personally. I need to think this way because I have a tendency to not take a lot of crap from people.

However, if the patient is just a jerk and their behavior is NOT the result of any kind of psychological impairment/problem or cultural difference, I will have them sign a behavioral contract. If they violate the contract, we show them the door. That is one thing that I appreciate about my hospital - for the most part, this behavior will not be tolerated. There is no reason for health care providers to tolerate abuse from patients!!!!

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bigsyis has 24 years experience and specializes in ER, Occupational Health, Cardiology.

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The most obnoxious patients sometimes have family members who are good at threatening or actually making trouble for staff. I do what I have to do, as fast I can, and leave the room. Have been known to bring another staff member in to assist and act as a witness also.

When I worked in the hospital, this is what I did. Even in the Cardio practice there have been a few I didn't want to go into a room alone with, so someone else helped take vital signs. Whatever you do, don't get into an argument with folks like that!

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classicdame is a MSN, EdD and specializes in Hospital Education Coordinator.

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Here is how I approach it - I am a nice person. If you don't like me then you must be crazy. If you are crazy I cannot take it personal whatever you say and do. Therefore, say what you like because you are crazy.

Found it has really helped.

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