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Patient's who STINK

LPN/LVN   (515 Views 7 Comments)
by nurse_1993 nurse_1993, LVN (New Member) New Member

nurse_1993 has 1 years experience as a LVN and works as a Clinic LVN.

361 Visitors; 8 Posts

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Hello all,

I work in a walk-in clinic setting (urgent care) and I had a few questions about this topic.

We clinic nurses and fellow medical assistants are stuck with a patient in a room while we vital and get down pertinent information down. I have only a handful of patients who come in and they STINK, as if they have not taken a shower in months. Like the minute you walk in, you want to barf kind of stink. I've had to splint someone's leg and foot and it was the nastiest thing I have ever smelled. (I previously worked LTC and seen/done/smelled a lot of nasty things and it's nothing compared to it).

At this point, are we able to tell the patient somewhere along the lines like, "I'm sorry, I can not finish my job, do not take it personal but you stink. Here's something to clean yourself off with." but in a nice way? 

Thank you for any clarification.

 

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Emergent has 25 years experience and works as a Emergency Room RN.

7 Followers; 2 Articles; 64,188 Visitors; 2,780 Posts

I encounter this in the ER. You can always wear a mask with a scent on it. Those types are clueless, it wouldn't dawn on them that it was because of their BO.

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1,161 Visitors; 54 Posts

Try breathing through your mouth.  Sometimes it works, but sometimes the smell is so bad that you end up tasting the BO. 

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egglady has 25 years experience and works as a LPN in long term care.

7,710 Visitors; 350 Posts

Vicks under your nose and a mask.  It works.  I've done this for decades.

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962 Visitors; 17 Posts

Ummm no. Come on now. 

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Snatchedwig has 3 years experience as a CNA, LPN and works as a LTACH Medsurg.

1 Follower; 471 Visitors; 95 Posts

How about you assess the patient and see why said persons have hygiene issues? Financial? Lack of resources? Your job as a nurse is to treat the patient in its entirety. I would be trying to find the root cause and treating that person with compassion.

Maybe Ms. Sally has to prioritize buying food than deodorant. 

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18 Visitors; 1 Post

Yes this happens quite often.  A lot of times patients have financial issues.  Sometimes depression can play a huge part in this.  

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