NPO stories (NPO what??!)

Specialties Operating Room


  • by CIRQL8
    Specializes in Only the O.R. and proud of it!.

You are reading page 2 of NPO stories (NPO what??!)

Specializes in 5 yrs OR, ASU Pre-Op 2 yr. ER.

Last month we had to cancel a colon resection because the pt. decided to swing through the McDonald's drive through for a biscuit and gravy.

Apparently he thought not eating after midnight was optional.

Long Term Care Columnist / Guide

VivaLasViejas, ASN, RN

108 Articles; 9,985 Posts

Specializes in LTC, assisted living, med-surg, psych.
I used to work L&D and taught Lamaze classes. I told my classes that when they went into labor, they should stick to clear liquids as that was what the Drs recommended. I told them clear liqs could be almost anything that if held up to the light, you could see through. Well, you would not believe how many of them added donuts to their NPO list because you could SEE through THEM(that center hole). That happened so many times that I began telling the classes, NO DONUTS EITHER!! LOL. :rotfl:

Reminds me of the time I was having false labor with my first child, and a friend of mine cautioned me against eating anything I "wouldn't want to see again", because women are apt to get nauseated during transition. Stupid me........several days after this conversation, I'd just polished off a huge plate of lasagna when the contractions began in earnest. I was OK until transition hit, then BLEEAAAHHHH........up came the lasagna, little the worse for wear, but the sight (and the smell) of it was so gross that to this day I can't stand even the THOUGHT of the stuff. :o

You know, I'm amazed sometimes at how liberal doctors have become with feeding patients after surgeries.........back in the 'old days' when I was having my last child, my OB kept me NPO for two whole DAYS after my C-section, allowing me ice chips and sips of clears only after I was up and ambulatory. This troubled me greatly, for I've always loved the pleasures of the table and I didn't understand then why it was best to go slowly after major abdominal surgery.......the problem was, I wasn't passing any flatus, and in those days you didn't get to eat, let alone go home, until you'd done so. Since I have been known to do things that were NOT in my best interests, when my afternoon nurse asked me if I'd passed any gas I smiled brightly and said "YES!" Pretty soon here came my celebration dinner: filet mignon with baked potato, salad, strawberry cheesecake, and a glass of champagne.

I'm sure you can imagine how I felt with all of that food laying on top of a sluggish was AWFUL. The gas cramps were so agonizing that I could barely move without wanting to scream, and when I left the hospital late that afternoon, I refused to allow my BIL to take pictures of Ben and me being escorted out to the car in the wheelchair. I still looked nine months pregnant!! Lord, I was miserable........but you know, I wasn't home 20 minutes before the bubble burst, so to speak, and everything began to, uh, loosen up. I just ran to the bathroom and spent the next half hour offloading what must've been a 100-gallon drum's worth of methane! By the time I was done, my belly had deflated to the size of a FOUR-month pregnancy.....and never again have I tried to circumvent an NPO order. :uhoh21:

TracyB,RN, RN

646 Posts

Specializes in jack of all trades, master of none.

T&A on a kid cancelled b/c he swallowed the gum he got caught chewing....Boy his folks were NOT happy campers..

another case, adult, forget the surgery, but she had a piece of hard candy & was delayed 6 hrs, another adult, drank milk, delayed until next day, after being re-instructed on what NPO meant.


1 Article; 3,037 Posts

Specializes in Medical.

This is a bit OT, because it's not about NPO, but it's relevant in that it's yet another story about how patients/family can twist what you say to suit them.

I had a renal patient on a 1000ml fluid restriction, who always came in way over his dry weight. His English wasn't great, but he lived with his son and daughter-in-law, and we'd told them over and over about why he needed the restriction, what it was...

So I'm watching his daughter unpack his suitcase for an overnight stay and she pulls out a 1.25L botttle of lemon squash - fluid and soft drink (which isn't great in end-stage renal failure).

When I said "no, he can't have that much fluid" she replied "It's just lemon!" like I was some kind of monster, then brought out a 2L bottle of water! I opened my mouth and she shot me this 'you monster' look and said (all together now) "It's just water!"

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