Do you ever massage your patients? - page 2

I had a confused pt. during a shift who would frequently call out for help. She was extremely forgetful. I decided to give her a shoulder, neck, and back rub and this really seemed to help her calm... Read More

  1. by   CaLLaCoDe
    I'll give a massage when I'm transporting a patient for let's say an ultrasound. But is not a full on massage. I noticed just using my knuckles on those tough knots on the back, applying some pressure and then easing off in a circular motion works wonders to sooth a patient who's concerned about recent events, since most diagnostics are done during the first days of a patient's stay.

    I know of a care partner from the Phillipines who got her nursing training but never could pass the boards who gives great massages to my patients and they sleep well! The only thing is don't count on your vitals to be in on time LOL!

    Oh and touching my clients for assessment initially helps to sooth them. So I'll take my time gentley palpating for pulse or rubbing my fingers along their lower leg while talking about their day looking for edema. Works like a charm to sooth my patients; simular to how old school doctor's would use their time to sooth rather than rush on to the next several patients.
    Last edit by CaLLaCoDe on Sep 25, '07
  2. by   bagladyrn
    Working in L&D, I use massage quite frequently. It's great for reducing the tension most women build up in their arms and shoulders in labor and for relieving leg cramps while pushing. I tend to use a little verbal guidance as well, encouraging them to release the tension in the areas as I massage - seems to work well for many women. Incorporating counterpressure on the lower back with massage between contractions works wonders for women with back labor.
  3. by   ElvishDNP
    I've scratched backs for antepartums who couldn't get comfy in our hosp beds. It works well. I don't do massage for fear of throwing someone (who is already high-risk) into PTL via accidentally hitting the wrong pressure point.
  4. by   BookwormRN
    Backrubs are an expectation q shift at our hospital. On our shift, the CNA does a backrub with lotion at HS.

    I also use a backrub (time permitting!) for pts who are having a difficult time relaxing, or getting to sleep. (Esp if they have nothing ordered for sleep! It works wonders!!!
  5. by   Hoozdo
    We do it more often than not in my ICU. We do it along with bathing. It's a great way to assess the skin and relax an anxious pt. We also buy good smelling lotions to put on the pts during the massage rather than the generic hospital lotion. All the patients seem to love it, (the ones that are not intubated and can talk).
  6. by   MB37
    According to my Fundamentals text, it is an expected part of the bed bath. According to my Fundamentals teacher, it is at "nurse's discretion," and (while laughing), "you might have time to slap some lotion on before you run to your next patient." She said she's never given a patient a massage, but then her specialty is OR. I dated a nurse for a while who went to school about 10 years ago, and he gave awesome massages that he said he had to learn in NS. I was kind of looking forward to getting some training, but I guess not since we're already past that unit.
  7. by   Indy
    I had a retired nurse whose doc unexpectedly took her off her neurontin, and her feet were hurting. I looked at her pain meds, saw the problem, and finally just gave her a good foot rub with her lotion, the cheap hospital stuff. She was in heaven. It worked, until morning. She made a little face, said her feet weren't right, and I just sighed, looked at her and said, "foot rub?" "Yes please!"

    I figured, after all her time on her feet she could use one more...

    I've done backrubs for demented people, but more often than not they prefer hands and arms; gotta be careful with those little ole ladies. One lady scratched her knees and I asked, do you want some lotion on your knees? She nodded, I put some on, she got huffy with me and told me to quit violating her. Yes maam!

    My first total knee patient couldn't stay comfortable for longer than a couple of hours, no matter what. Turns out her hips bother her to lie on the side, her back bothers her to lie on her back. She got backrubs and then some, with my good lotion - I hoped it would soothe her 'cause it smells good. She did get more of what I'd term an actual massage because there were real kinks in her lower back that I tried to work out, and of course I'd tell her where I was going to massage prior to doing it. Her privacy was protected, etc. No rush, no mistaking my intent, etc. I told her she really just needed to spend a day at the spa when her incision healed up, and that I was glad to be able to help her sleep better.

    Many times during bed baths, especially with vented patients, they get a rub while their back is being cleaned. Sometimes it's done in combination with the range of motion stuff too.
  8. by   Tweety
    During a bath on the bedridden ones with head injuries I have. I agree it does calm them down.