How much poop/puke/cleaning of bodily fluids is there in nursing school? - page 5

Hey all. I'm starting in September and just want to know what I should be preparing myself mentally for. How much poop/puke/pee etc is involved? Is it a daily basis thing or just once in a while? ... Read More

  1. by   ♪♫ in my ♥
    Quote from priorities2
    Okay. I'm just asking about school though. So, every day in nursing clinicals in RN school you clean up poop?
    I didn't.

    Sure, there was some, but it's not like every person who's in the hospital is incontinent and puking all over the place.

    There are also degrees of poop. Sometimes it's just a matter of emptying a bedpan (pretty detached) and sometimes they're covered in it and it's coming out as fast as you can wipe it off.

    And sometimes, the patients are perfectly capable of managing their own bowel/bladder function.
  2. by   NickiLaughs
    Sometimes you wonder, "how does a person produce that much poop in one shift?" *Sigh* I can't recall too many days in nursing school where patients didn't produce various body fluids.
  3. by   joanna73
    OP you need to work at the bedside at least 3 years before going to NP school, if you want to develop solid clinical judgement. You just don't know what you don't know.

    Bedside nursing involves caring....and bodily fluids. The focus should be on the holistic plan of care for that patient, not the fact that you're cleaning up after them. Otherwise, you should consider clinic work or some type of desk job after a couple of years working bedside if you can't tolerate bodily fluids.
  4. by   Esme12
    The answer is....do you utilize the rest room every day? Then so does your patient....and if you wish to be a good ADVANCED practitioner you need to know the basics first. I have to say I find it REALLY annoying when these questions are asked because they have no intention of being a nurse...they want the fast track to the big bucks.

    I see a problem in the future with NP and the flooding of this lucrative market....there will be plently of NP's and not enough clinics to go around...they just might find themselves back at the bedside dealing with excrement.

    An ADVANCED nurse needs to learn the basics first.
  5. by   GodIs082010
    Quote from Esme12
    The answer is....do you utilize the rest room every day? Then so does your patient....and if you wish to be a good ADVANCED practitioner you need to know the basics first. I have to say I find it REALLY annoying when these questions are asked because they have no intention of being a nurse...they want the fast track to the big bucks.

    I see a problem in the future with NP and the flooding of this lucrative market....there will be plently of NP's and not enough clinics to go around...they just might find themselves back at the bedside dealing with excrement.

    An ADVANCED nurse needs to learn the basics first.
    You took the words out of my mouth
  6. by   priorities2
    Quote from lianna88
    I personally don't think she's lazy or anything like that....I just think it's rather naive to think you'll be avoiding it by being in any one specialty. I have psych nurses in my family that tell me the awesome stories of poop under the hand rails in the hallway, poop flying across the hall, body fluid everywhere....you get the picture. It just happens. I just think it's silly to say "oh well I want to do this so tell me what I want to hear." I don't know....it's health care. It's gonna happen. And nothing in life is certain, that's for sure! Like the OP, I went into nursing school with my eyes wide and glowing at being a PMHNP (previous degree and experience in psych, turned down PhD programs for nursing school), and I've since changed my mind! Anything can happen so it's best to be prepared and ready!
    Well yeah, I made this thread in order to become more prepared and ready. I do for sure plan on becoming an outpatient PMHNP though. If I change my mind, that would be my choice, and I would have determined that whatever bodily fluids go along with a different career path are something I can handle.

    I definitely won't attend a PMHNP program that doesn't provide me with preceptors and clinicals. In any given nurse's opinion, you might need 3 years of RN experience to be an effective PMHNP, but in reality, it's perfectly legal and tolerated to become one with 0 years or 1 year.

    Anyway, it doesn't sound like it's not something I can handle. I'm definitely not in it for the big bucks, and honestly that's kind of presumptuous of you to say, based on a single question. I want to do psychotherapy, and I want to help people understand that medication is not the only way to solve many psych problems - that some more holistic, less harmful solutions are often available, especially to children. Do you think there are no other noble goals within the field of nursing than cleaning messes?

    This thread has become so critical/presumptuous ... makes me want to go out there and prove it wrong haha. I do appreciate all the feedback from people who have shared their experiences without judging my motives.
    Last edit by priorities2 on Jul 13, '13
  7. by   BSNbeDONE
    My definition of sick: When one's internals become one's externals without warning or control. It's not timed by the hour nor by the shift. It just happens; sometimes when you have just left the room; sometimes when you have just entered the room. It's always a toss-up when you're on the clock whether as an employee or as a student. Just be prepared for the worst and hope for the best. Sometimes being knee-deep in poop is better than being chewed out by an instructor or a doctor. The poop is far less painful.
  8. by   BSNbeDONE
    Is it just me or is there truly a rise in the amount of poop posts here on AN lately? OMG! Is the world finally going to oop:??!?!?!!!? Is it time to head for the bomb shelter???
  9. by   manusko
    Quote from Esme12
    The answer is....do you utilize the rest room every day? Then so does your patient....and if you wish to be a good ADVANCED practitioner you need to know the basics first. I have to say I find it REALLY annoying when these questions are asked because they have no intention of being a nurse...they want the fast track to the big bucks.

    I see a problem in the future with NP and the flooding of this lucrative market....there will be plently of NP's and not enough clinics to go around...they just might find themselves back at the bedside dealing with excrement.

    An ADVANCED nurse needs to learn the basics first.
    How many times do you have to wipe a butt to be a good NP? You guys act like ppl who go straight on to NP are somehow manipulating the system. Again I will say that no one in their right mind likes cleaning poop.
  10. by   OCNRN63
    Quote from priorities2
    Chrisrn, I know I can handle it. I mean, I don't know, I feel your tone is a little judgmental/dismissive (it could just be the effect of the interwebs). I just was looking for factual information--how often does poop cleaning come up in nursing school (not everyone who goes to RN school plans to work as an RN for an extended period of time in an inpatient setting). Like once every clinical, twice every clinical, twice every other clinical.
    How can anyone possible give you a specific answer for this? Yes, it comes up, depending on your clinical rotation. Some areas are more prone to having poop/puke/urine, like a rotation at a nursing home. If you do a clinical in home health, maybe not so much. The bottom line is it's part of the job, so you need to be prepared to handle it, even if you're in school.
  11. by   rubato
    OP, yes it can get judgmental on here, but it sounds like you've got a good attitude about it. It's not just here, everyone's pretty judgmental.

    As far as my clinical experience, I had days where I felt like all I did was clean up poop and days where I never had to do it. It just depends. But, every single day I dealt with urine. I always had to keep track of it for I & Os, but urine is no biggie. I rarely had vomit except for my oncology clinicals. The worst was the trach suctioning, but that's a whole other story. Yuck!
  12. by   nurseprnRN
    The point about the saturated market is a good one. Not everyone who plans to go to NP or CRNA school will actually go; not everyone who goes to NP or CRNA school will actually get work as one. Therefore your Plan B should ALWAYS be to return to bedside, because it's unrealistic to expect otherwise.

    In most states a PMHNP has to have a signed agreement for collaboration with a licensed MD psychiatrist. How many of those will accommodate a slew of newly-minted (plus experienced) NPs?

    The other thing that struck me was your request to have a specific number, although since no one could give you one you did back off on that. If you are the kind of person who puts great stock in your personal efficacy and expertise and cherishes precision and control, being an NP may not give you what you need. Being an RN certainly won't -- humans are messy, unpredictable, and believe it or not, not always grateful for your expertise and care. Do not go into being a PMHNP with a focus on holistic care/med mgmt/etc and think that you will be able to set it all right for all, or even a few, of your clientele. Just sayin' you might want to spend some quality time shadowing a real PMHNP to get a better feel for it in the concrete to go with your goals in the abstract.
  13. by   OCNRN63
    Quote from Esme12
    The answer is....do you utilize the rest room every day? Then so does your patient....and if you wish to be a good ADVANCED practitioner you need to know the basics first. I have to say I find it REALLY annoying when these questions are asked because they have no intention of being a nurse...they want the fast track to the big bucks.

    I see a problem in the future with NP and the flooding of this lucrative market....there will be plently of NP's and not enough clinics to go around...they just might find themselves back at the bedside dealing with excrement.

    An ADVANCED nurse needs to learn the basics first.
    I couldn't agree more. I don't know which I find more frightening, all these students/new grads who seem to be too good to help people with intimate care, or the ones who have no intention of developing a solid foundation before going on to be providers. I'm going to be old someday, and as someone who also has a serious health issue, I wonder if there will be any competent and compassionate nurses left to take care of me. (And everyone else who needs care.)

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