CDiff Smell?

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mdsslave

2 Posts

Has 22 years experience.

If you can smell the C-diff, pseudomonis, etc., you have sucked particles of the organism into your nasal passages, which is why you continue to smell it for so long. Your own system has to overcome the "sample". I carry a saline/TeaTree nasal spray in my bag to help overcome such occurances (as well as to proactively circumvent any stray flu/cold bugs that think I'm an inviting host!).

Specializes in Internal Medicine Unit.
I've read about it as well, here are a couple links:

ScienceDaily: Can Dogs Smell Cancer?

Dogs Can Smell Cancer - CBS News

My husband had a "different" odor to his breath before his thyroid cancer was diagnosed and treated. Don't know if it was the cancer or the impaired metabolism that gave off the odor. My grandfather had prostate ca. with mets to the bone. He had a very sickly sweet body odor that couldn't be washed from the bedding even long after he had died.

Seven, RN2b

142 Posts

A question that I have been wanting to ask - but, didn't know how to bring it up (and this thread gave me the perfect opportunity) - Is it inappropriate to gag when dealing with these smells (stool, vomit, etc)? How do you control gagging? Or do you "just get used to it" and you eventually don't have those kinds of reactions?

Specializes in Cardiothoracic Transplant Telemetry.

How about the pee you get after someone gets their banana bag for ETOH withdrawal. I swear, the combination of the smell of urine, alcohol and multivitamin gets me every time. I don't think that I will ever get used to that one. I would prefer the smell of c-diff any day

Warpster

151 Posts

WeeBabyRN wrote, "I think it smells like road kill on a 100 degree day mixed with silent but deadly flatus."

Yeah, that's the one. Once you smell it, you can diagnose it when you get off the elevator on your floor, trust me.

The good news is that eventually you get used to it, and it's just another diagnostic tool, that sense of smell for things you don't particularly want to know.

dwills302

25 Posts

Congratulations on passing your boards!!!

cjudesaenz

23 Posts

Wow... this thread is insane... it kind of freaking me out... thank god for my iron stomach... to bad I have an acute sense of smell... Looking forward to using the old schnozola when I start clincials... WOW just WOW...

hecete

30 Posts

yuck, you can definately diagnose c-diff

by the unforgetable smell. i actually had another nurse order stool for c-diff on a resident that was constipated!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:lol2:

EmmaG, RN

2,999 Posts

Lots of unique smells... Cdiff, GI bleed, bowel obstructions, infections, neuro, renal, liver, etc. And thankfully one I don't encounter so much anymore, advanced cervical cancer.

CitrusBeeRN

19 Posts

Specializes in pediatric transplant.

Earthy...almost like the smell of compost...but worse.

BlueEyedRN

171 Posts

Specializes in ICU.
A question that I have been wanting to ask - but, didn't know how to bring it up (and this thread gave me the perfect opportunity) - Is it inappropriate to gag when dealing with these smells (stool, vomit, etc)? How do you control gagging? Or do you "just get used to it" and you eventually don't have those kinds of reactions?

If you can tell from outside the room that you are going to gag, wear a mask, spray something in it or use mentholatum, and breathe through your mouth. I've gagged in front of patients before, but it was pretty bad and honestly, they knew it and were embarrassed, but understood. A lot of times, I just get into a zone when I'm in there working with it, but then outside the room I have to lay my head down for a minute to keep from throwing up. Just try to focus on what you have to do and try not to think about what you've got your (well-gloved) hands in.

Specializes in Emergency, Nursing Management, Auditing. Has 16 years experience.

Cdiff smells almost... fishy, there is a slight undertone of fishiness to it. It's hard to describe otherwise. One of my other least favorite smells is multivitamins... you know, when you're mixing a banana bag and you can't get the smell of the MVI off your hands! Yuck!