Stinky Nurse - page 2

okay we have this new rn in our facility. and he has a serious bo. you can even smell his stench from a distance. i feel bad about him because everyone knows he smells and talks about him. i think he... Read More

  1. by   MA Nurse
    Quote from medic2ernurse2b
    If you know his e-mail address you can go to They will send an anonymous e-mail. But I have never used it.
    On a lighter note, if a patient mentions something to you, maybe you could suggest s/he bring it to the manager's attention? Then the manager could tell him the complaint was received from a patient and not a co-worker. In some workplaces, supervisors and managers seem to take complaints more seriously from a patient/client/customer than from a co-worker.
    Thanks for the best laugh I've had in a long time!
  2. by   deeDawntee
    OH MY GOD!! EEEUUUUU!!! How do we end up in these situations? OK somebody has to tell this guy. And it needs to happen to his face and the sooner the better. I do agree that it sounds like the NM's job. God knows they should have to do something once in a while to earn their extra pay!!! hehehe Whoever hired Mr. Smelly needs to do the dirty work!!

  3. by   RNDreamer
    In my past place of employment, when there was an odor issue (for some reason I could never smell what they were talking about), my co workers dealt it as followed:

    a. If it was a new person, or someone we did not know too well or couldn't approach, the supervisor was informed and dealt with it.

    b. If it was someone we knew well, they would inform the person who was closest to the person and have them tell. For ex: Bill smells and everyone knows Bill and Troy are close friends. People would ask Troy to have a private conversation with Bill about his odor.
    Last edit by RNDreamer on Oct 7, '07
  4. by   Drysolong
    This just seems like a situation that the NM should have already handled. In my last place of employment (Non-medical) before becoming a nurse, this issue was addressed in Orientation. There were guidelines already in place for a person's immediate supervisor to counsel employees on this issue, if ever necessary.
  5. by   al7139
    My two cents are this: Agree with the person who said if the pts are complaining, to give the pt the resource to go to the unit mgr or the pt advocate. On our unit we are empowered to confront (not in a bad way another nurse, staff etc, who is a problem), but this is a toughie! Especially you are not confronting them on meds, documentation, etc. I would recommend giving the pts who complain the option to discuss it with a pt advocate and go from there. Ther are some things I am completely ok with discussing with another staff that mabye missed a med, left an empty fluig\d bag for me to change out etc. But I would be very uncomfortable discussing personal hygeine ( or lack thereof )with that person, so leave it up to mgt. Please do remember it may not be a hygeine issue, but a cultural issue involving diet. For eg: Lots of Asian cultures are very fastidious as far as hygeine, but their diet can still produce an odor that may be offensive to people not used to that culture. Just like I do not wear anything stronger than good old soap and water and deoderant to work, sometimes culture can play a big part in odor due to the foods they eat. Let your NM know, and have her handle it.
  6. by   al7139
    To add to my two cents:
    If it is culture, there may not be anything that can be done...How can you tell someone from another country to change their diet so they don't smell? Lots of times that is all they have to hold onto from their home country, and you cannot tell a person to change their culture and diet since it's discrimination. Its' one thing if it is clearly a hygeine problem, but if it is a person whose culture includes strong smelling foods such as garlic, fish etc. you cannot tell them to change the way they eat.
  7. by   gonzo1
    THe best way to deal with this is to have a staff meeting and go over the hygiene rules for the unit. Address girls wearing perfume that is too strong and or guys wearing cologne that is too strong. Impress upon everyone that patients are sensitive to smells and everyone needs to bath daily and use non smelly deodorant before work so as to make sure all patients are comfortable. This way everyone is included and no one is singled out. Also include a little ditty about being careful what one eats before or during work so that bad breath is decreased and to not smoke during work so patients don't smell smoke on nurses or other staff.
  8. by   Tweety
    Quote from Drysolong
    This just seems like a situation that the NM should have already handled. In my last place of employment (Non-medical) before becoming a nurse, this issue was addressed in Orientation. There were guidelines already in place for a person's immediate supervisor to counsel employees on this issue, if ever necessary.
    Studies show that something like 16% of employees complaints about coworkers are addressed by the management (this is not just nursing, but business). Sometimes it's best to have a plan B, espeically is the gossiping behind the nurses back continues.
  9. by   agldragonRN
    thanks everyone. i will consider all the advice and see the best route. the biggest thing is we don't want to offend him. but i know it's not nice to talk about him behind is back either. today the nurse manager said she will talk to this nurse. but that's what she said last time. we shall see...

  10. by   flashpoint
    Sending someone a notice from is quite a process...
  11. by   kukukajoo
    I had this problem with a friend of mine in high school. She was born in Greece and moved here as a child. I had known her since jr high- before her sweat glands were developed. well in high school, she never used deodorant (never heard of it!!). Common when you are from a fishing village on a tiny tiny island...... there nobody notices since everyone is the same and the nose is accustomed to the odor, It sort of "disappears".

    We had gone shopping one day and I showed her the deodorant and had the talk and she was very thankful and I completely understood.

    Those talking behind this person's back are doing him a great disservice and really need to stop with this high school garbage.
  12. by   agldragonRN
    just an update guys... so our nm talked to the new nurse and we had been odor free from him for 2 weeks now. i guess he just needed to use deodorant. thank you all for the replies. i hope i don't encounter this sitution again because i don't want to hold my breath again for a situation like that.

  13. by   sarahbellum
    As politely as possible I think you should tell him. We had a fellow student in my Biology class that had BO and my best friend told him.

    She said "You know, you are a really nice and smart person. You should try to take better care of yourself, it doesn't give a good first impression ect..."

    He actually approached her on campus the next semester and thanked her. He started taking better care of his hygiene and got a job and a girlfriend!