Likes and dislikes...

  1. OK, What do you like about neuro ICU, and what do you dislike about it?
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  2. Visit cheripa profile page

    About cheripa

    Joined: May '03; Posts: 75
    RN

    12 Comments

  3. by   cheripa
    OK, someone out there has to have a comment..... :angel2:

    I just accepted a position in this unit and I wanted to know what comes with the territory. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated :hatparty:

    Quote from cheripa
    OK, What do you like about neuro ICU, and what do you dislike about it?
  4. by   JennyMacRN2B
    nothing worse than good ol' neuro breath.
  5. by   Good_Queen_Bess
    I've only been working in NICU for about 3 months or so, but have a neuro background.
    I love it! It's so interesting! I like only having one patient as you can dedicate all your care and skills to that one person. I like the technical side of it, the monitoring and the figures and number-crunching. Although it can be emotionally hard at times, we have a good support network and everyone helps each other. It can also be emotionally rewarding when all your hard work pays off when people survive and come back and see you when they are well.
    I could go on, but I know for certain that the move to NICU was the best move I have made in my career.
  6. by   Gerilynn
    Quote from JennyMacRN2B
    nothing worse than good ol' neuro breath.
    My sister was recently in a Motorcycle accident and didn't survive it.
    When we were saying our good byes, the nurse warned us of a smell when we were near her head. What was this from?
    I didn't hear what she had said at the time, and I haven't been able to much out on the internet what it was from.


    Thanks!
    Geri
  7. by   JennyMacRN2B
    Quote from Gerilynn
    My sister was recently in a Motorcycle accident and didn't survive it.
    When we were saying our good byes, the nurse warned us of a smell when we were near her head. What was this from?
    I didn't hear what she had said at the time, and I haven't been able to much out on the internet what it was from.


    Thanks!
    Geri
    first of all I am really so sorry to hear about your sister. I am not so sure what causes the smell of neuro breath, but it is distinct. They say every floor of the hospital has different distinct smells from oncology to OB. I wish I had an answer for you.
    Jenny
  8. by   JennyMacRN2B
    My previous answer was so brief, maybe even a little inappropriate. Neuro breath is not the worse part of working in the neuro unit. Seeing a patient who is responsive go into vasospasm become unresponsive (and never return to normal) ranks up there as some of the worse. Never knowing what to tell families when they ask "how long before they wake up?" There is no exact science in the neuro unit, sometimes you just never know. Some people are never fazed by a bleed or trauma, while others are never the same. Seeing a 94 year old woman live thru a good sized bleed because she has brain atrophy and room to swell, while a 42 year old is in a coma because he has the same size/type bleed, but no room to go is just ironic. There are good parts to neuro though, I love most of the families, and the bond I have between some patients. It's seeing a good outcome in a bad situation. It also is very humbling. I thought I knew how precious life was, but I didn't. I know that at any moment my life can change, and I could die. I hug my kid a little bit harder and make sure everyone knows that I love them. I also make sure everyone's blood pressure is in check, and they take care of themselves. I have only worked in the unit since June, but I have learned a ton. I plan on working there for a while, and I sure that I will never stop learning.
  9. by   Gerilynn
    Jenny, I don't think that it was inappropriate. It just happens to be a part of working it that department.
    I think it possibly has something to do with drainage pooling. That is just a guess.
    I am starting the BSN program in Spring and will have lots to learn.
    I think that all of the nurses that work in the different ICU's are amazing people.
    There was one nurse that was excellent. My sister was in the Trauma ICU for about 2 days, so I didn't get chance to get to know her. My sister had just graduated from nursing school in Florida and got her nursing in the mail the day of the accident. Vivian my sisters nurse told my mom that nurses are sisters and that they take care of each other. This really touched my mom, she is also a nurse. The Dr. came out on New Years eve and confirmed what I was thinking, that she was not going to make it. Her ICP pressures were like 180 by time Dr. did rounds.
    Vivian allowed family/friend back to allow us to say goodbye. My sister had wanted to be an organ donor so we had to wait a couple more hours to speak with them. In the mean time Vivian had given my mom her badge so she could go back and see my sister when she wanted. She also had moved my sister over in the bed and let me mom get into bed with my sister and hold her one last time.
    I am so grateful for her doing that. You all are very amazing people.

    Geri
  10. by   sofaraway04
    I am a student on NITU at the moment. what i like about it is the one to one care. you have enough time to carry out physical care like mouth and eye care, which often gets missed on the wards. I also like working with the numbers and doing fluid balance properly.i also like suctioning traccys, even though it makes alot of the nurses feel sick! The thing i find most daunting is talking to the relatives and not really sure in what to say as things are generally not that positive.
  11. by   nurse lucky
    I like the miracles and the chance to really get to know someone. I don't like that family members won't allow periods of rest for the patient. It seems like if you have a heart attack, then everyone wants you to rest, but if you have a head bleed that the visitors stimulate them constantly to help them wake up. I have a hard time getting them to sit quietly for a period of time, without talking or touching the patient. I tell them I'm going to go sit next to them for 8 hours while they are trying to sleep and rub their arm all night long and talk to them and see if they get quality sleep. I try to prevent ICU psychosis by allowing sleep between neuro checks.

    They have a big joke around work, that I always get better neuro responses, even the docs kid me about it. I really do have people respond more to me, and I know it's partly because of the rest periods I provide. I have had families just glaring at me across the room because I told them to step back for an hour or 2, letting them sit in the room, but with no stimulation and then have a moment of forgiveness when I wake up mom and she speaks for the 1st time in days!!! Then I reinforce rest periods and they join in and advocate for rest! It's so fun for me to see!

    I hate neuro breath, too. I think it's from the meds. I do great oral care and it alleviates it for a while, but always returns.

    I also like organ donation. It feels so helpful in such a time of sadness and helps me with emotionally deal with the tradgedy.
    Quote from cheripa
    OK, What do you like about neuro ICU, and what do you dislike about it?
  12. by   gwenith
    I get around the glare from the relatives by telling them that they need time for themselves too. Neuro recovery is often a "long haul" and they will need to look after themselves to be able to give the best to their loved ones. It empowers them to leave and it makes it less about you and the patient and more about them and the patient.
  13. by   caraibrit
    I have just qualified with a BSc in Pre-Registration Nursing. I have recently been offered a post in Neuro Critical Care, pending references and checks. I quickly found after being oriented into the muted, quiet environment that it was where I wanted to be. I'm grateful I've been given the opportunity to develop my professional practice in this area.
    Happy New Year everyone!
    Caraibrit
    :icon_smile:
  14. by   squirlkeeperCCRN
    I work in a general ICU (not neuro specific) but get plenty of heads and do enjoy taking care of them. I think the inconsistency in neuro patients is stimulating. Just when you think you know what they are doing...you do another exam and things have changed...that keeps you busy. It is a real challenge to maintain ICP's in tight parameters with so many interplaying factors. I like being involved in the organ donations process and all that goes with that. It is very traumatic and sad at times but the good outcomes help me to accept the bad.

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