Ever have a patient that "turns" on you?


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canesdukegirl, BSN, RN

8 Articles; 2,543 Posts

Specializes in Trauma Surgery, Nursing Management. Has 14 years experience.
"Somewhere in the shaky-armed flailing, one of them gave me a black eye, and continued to pummel me."

This is perhaps the most beautiful sentence I have read in a long while.

The image it evokes is cinematic and, in my opinion, would probably make the most sense shot in super-slo-motion with perhaps Bach's 'Ave Maria' as the background music. The scene is a flashback and begins with ladynurse12's narration of that wonderful sentence. The pummeling would last at least 90 seconds, and would include dentures being displaced from being sunken into flesh, a close-up of an orthopedic shoe-clad foot repeatedly heelstomping an unprotected ribcage, and culminate in a flying elbow to the side of ladynurse12's neck as she covers up in the fetal position. The scene ends as the geriatric assailant spits on our defeated protagonist and gives the middle finger with both hands directly into the camera; freeze frame; fade out.

(Sorry - I've obviously had way too much coffee.)

Can we edit the scene a bit? Before WWF Grandma spits, she rips off her Posey restraint, throws it down victoriously and then bends over while curling her shaky arms into 'muscle man pose'.

RNperdiem, RN

4,591 Posts

Has 14 years experience.

The patients that over-praise you and criticize the other nurses are almost guaranteed to turn on you sooner or later.

Effusive praise is a warning sign.

psu_213, BSN, RN

3,878 Posts

Specializes in Emergency, Telemetry, Transplant. Has 14 years experience.
As an addendum to my previous post: She was "threatening" to go to The Other Hospital, where she said she would get "better care". Of course, what I really wanted to say was "Be my guest."

I love it when a pt says to me "ugh...I always have the worst experience here." Or "XYZ hospital (our 'competitor') treats me so much better." Wish I could call them a cab to get to get there.

Specializes in PICU, ICU, Hospice, Mgmt, DON. Has 18 years experience.
That's when I've had popsicle hostages.....the ransom was to be asked nicely for one. I've told kids (old enough to understand temper tantrums are NOT going to get the desired result) in front of their apathetic parent (lounging on the bed, ignoring the kid) that they might get away with yelling and screaming for what they want at home, but when they want something from me (obviously not really important stuff), they HAVE to ask in a nice voice. End of conversation. Exit room...... when they ring a few minute later, and ask nicely for a popsicle, they get their choice of anything I've got .....Mom gets zip :) (well, maybe sometimes!!)

Love it! Popsicle hostages:DI've have had many!

and also too many of those parents that ignore the "breath holding till I turn bluer than I already am" kids to count! I usually ignore them...or use the "stink eye" myself on the mom!:devil:

netglow, ASN, RN

4,412 Posts

The patients that over-praise you and criticize the other nurses are almost guaranteed to turn on you sooner or later.

Effusive praise is a warning sign.

Word! But also I find those who over-praise also can be in fear of poor treatment. I remember one LOL in private practice who would just go on and on with praise. I could see she also was a worrier, and I thought that she was more in fear of the possibility of poor treatment, which, when you see this type of person is so very sad. It's like those dogs who come up to you tail wagging but almost crawling with their head down only looking up to see if you are friendly or not and hoping you won't hurt them.

Jenni811, RN

1,032 Posts

Specializes in Intermediate care. Has 3 years experience.

i had a patient a few days ago that came in with a PE. Super nice man, so thankful for everything. Everytime someone came in his room he would tell us how wonderful we all were and how he appreciated everything. "this hospital is just amazing. I tell ya. we are so furtunate to have a place like this and people like you in our area" over and over and over. It was really flattering, but started to get a little old. Well, it is the morning of his discharge, he requests he takes a shower before he goes. "fine with me. your welcome to get dressed if you'd like while i work on your discharge papers" i told him it might take me a little bit longer because of his new medications. "Yea, that's fine. Take whatever time you need. i'm in no rush to get home" is what he told me.

well patient is going home on lovenox/coumadin and his pharmacy isn't open on sunday. So i'm playing hell trying to get this patients lovenox/coumadin. not to mention all the teaching i have to do with this patient on these medications. So discharge is taking quite a long time.

out of NOWHERE he storms out of his room with his telemetry box, comes up to the nurses station and announces he is leaving against medical advice because we are taking too long. He rips off his telemetry, throws it down the hall and storms out. He threatens "If anyone comes after me or tries to stop me you'll regret it. So just try it."



441 Posts

Specializes in Telemetry, Med-Surg, ED, Psych.
I have one patient I really have a good relationship with, but this worries me to no end because it kind of puts me in her sights.

This pt is the one that has the DON, the Facility head, the ombudsman, and state on speed dial. She will call from her room to the nurses station to report that her call light has gone unanswered for hours (her biggest complaint is having her cath bag emptied and most times she will hit her light and go back to sleep, the aides empty it, turn off the light and exit).

Every morning after she is hoyer lifted into her scooter she will be up at the facility managers office with a list of complaints. She has asked me to write up aides for not performing duties (which I have seen them do as I enter her room from the shared bathroom to care for her room mate and she doesnt always see me as she berates the aides to no end as they do her care).

She has gooten several aides pulled from her care, and had at least 1 nurse let go because of her accusations.

My concern is right before she goes on the warpath it always seems to be her favorite aide, nurse that gets the full brunt of it.

its patients like this that make me say "Please God take them home NOW"

chevyv, BSN, RN

1,679 Posts

Specializes in Acute Mental Health. Has 15 years experience.

I work as a psych nurse and can tell ya that it happens daily, too many times to count and it still sucks!

Specializes in LTC, OB/GYN, Primary Care. Has 7 years experience.

Sundowners? UTI? I'm used to this in LTC. One min my fav resident is trying to ask me to marry him (which I politely decline haha) then later that night he is screaming profanities at me and has NO idea who I am. Is this is a AO person I would attribute it to sickness/pain and stress and not take it personally. I know pain and hormonal shifts turn me into a biotch and I lash out to those I love most!

Anna Flaxis, BSN, RN

3 Articles; 2,816 Posts

Has 16 years experience.
The patients that over-praise you and criticize the other nurses are almost guaranteed to turn on you sooner or later.

Effusive praise is a warning sign.

So very true, when the effusive praise is combined with criticism of other team members. I'm also wary when the patient/family member uses my name a lot.

Specializes in Hospice, ONC, Tele, Med Surg, Endo/Output.

As the song goes: "they smile in your face, the back-stabbers":lol2: