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DNR tattoos...

Nurses   (20,875 Views 30 Comments)
by MerdalRN MerdalRN (Member) Member

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My soon to be hubby came home the other day with DNR tattooed midline center chest in 1 inch high black block letters. (I am totally serious!)

How would that be interperted in the event (god forbid!) that something really happened to him? He does not have an actual DNR order, and we have talked about wishes in the event of something terrible, but would EMS have to comply with his tattoo??

Hubby is a fireman/paramedic so he knows the consequences/outcomes of CPR and all, and I think this had lots to do with his decision to tattoo this, but I wish he had told me he was doing it :icon_roll

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RainDreamer has 13 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in NICU.

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A tattoo isn't a legal document.

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1,465 Posts; 10,603 Profile Views

Well, I was an EMT and would never honor a DNR tatoo. We had to have the DNR paper order in our hands before we could honor it. So don't worry.

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20 Posts; 1,086 Profile Views

That was my first statement to him...

I guess I was just more wondering if you came across, lets just say.. a bad MVA and you pulled him out of his truck and saw he had it tattooed on his chest but that he needed cpr. Would you do it??

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DutchgirlRN has 33 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in OB, M/S, HH, Medical Imaging RN.

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We had a 74 y/o patient who had DNR tatooted on her left breast because her children would not agree to make her a DNR. In the end it didn't stand up, she was a full-code but mercifully did not survive.

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sirI has 30 years experience as a MSN, APRN, NP and specializes in Education, FP, LNC, Forensics, ED, OB.

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DutchgirlRN has 33 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in OB, M/S, HH, Medical Imaging RN.

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That was my first statement to him...

I guess I was just more wondering if you came across, lets just say.. a bad MVA and you pulled him out of his truck and saw he had it tattooed on his chest but that he needed cpr. Would you do it??

No because DNR could be short for something else and who would want to make a mistake like that? Not me.

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1,785 Posts; 12,828 Profile Views

I have seen ICU nurses do CPR on someone - according to them, A DNR tattoo is not legal because it is not signed........

Seems a shame to do it though - I don't think you would get a DNR tattoo unless you had given it some thought beforehand and MEANT it enough to get it tattooed on yourself.

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DutchgirlRN has 33 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in OB, M/S, HH, Medical Imaging RN.

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I have seen ICU nurses do CPR on someone - according to them, A DNR tattoo is not legal because it is not signed........

Seems a shame to do it though - I don't think you would get a DNR tattoo unless you had given it some thought beforehand and MEANT it enough to get it tattooed on yourself.

Good Point Diary

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RainDreamer has 13 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in NICU.

3,570 Posts; 12,663 Profile Views

That was my first statement to him...

I guess I was just more wondering if you came across, lets just say.. a bad MVA and you pulled him out of his truck and saw he had it tattooed on his chest but that he needed cpr. Would you do it??

Of course you would. Like I said, it's not a legal document. Unless you want your butt sued, you better dang well do it.

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426 Posts; 5,875 Profile Views

i just imagine many pts changing their minds when they suddenly really cant breathe and have chest pain or whatever and dont really want to die right there.....that way .'today'...they will think it shouldve been different....they imagined they would be unconscious and not know interventions were held (i.e. they will not go quietly into the night they realize) ....but being conscious in the beginning can probably change things.....sometimes....

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jnrsmommy specializes in LTC/Rehab,Med/Surg, OB/GYN, Ortho, Neuro.

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As much as some of us have joked about getting that same tattoo....

Anyway, why not just take the money you're going to spend on the tat and go to a lawyer and have papers drawn up? Better use of the money, legal, and alot less painful, imo.

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