What is your Achilles heel?


Let me start by saying I am a last semester student. I have also been a tech at the hospital for 2 years.

Give me poo, vomit, anything... but please oh please not sputum....

I am desperately trying to get over my hatred of phlegm. Crazy right? Trach patients, I can't even.

Obviously, I am perfectly professional in the room, and care for these patients like any other, but seriously, I cannot be the only one, right?

Does anything gross you out, about the job, at this point?


300 Posts

No, I'm yet to come across anything that can make me heave!!

Ruas61, BSN, RN

1,368 Posts

Specializes in MDS/ UR. Has 41 years experience.

I cannot do an impaction removal.


194 Posts

I could never assist with circumcision *shudder*


213 Posts

I cannot do an impaction removal.

Maybe try getting a running start.

:roflmao: Just kidding bud.

Mine is a unique combination that EMS types will be all too familiar with; beer, blood and gasoline. Very sad. And I hate that just thinking of the smell causes a physical reaction in me right now. PTSD anyone?


1,753 Posts

Specializes in Surgical, quality,management. Has 12 years experience.

False eyes and eyeballs in general. Which is a problem because my Ward takes ophthalmic patients. Thankfully it's only about one a month.

Specializes in PDN; Burn; Phone triage. Has 8 years experience.

I work on a burn ICU. Not much I can't stomach except nasty, snotty, thick, green phlegm that we get from our trachs.

There is a particular combo of cdiff and sulfamylon solution that makes me gag.


75 Posts

Specializes in MICU. Has 5 years experience.

Gross but any time I can see pieces of food in vomit or stool. Makes me gag.


84 Posts

I thought mine was sputum until last week when I had to empty a JP drain from a renal abcess. Holy mother of God, give me a fresh trach any day over that!

Has 5 years experience.

Strong smelling vomit, the chunky stuff. Vomiting blood, feces or bile is fine, but give me that partially digested food and we are sharing a basin! :barf02:


716 Posts

Specializes in Public Health, L&D, NICU. Has 15 years experience.

Sputum. And I was lucky in my area of nursing to rarely encounter it. But, on the few occasions when we would have a C-section patient go under general, I would end up gagging when they would suction them. I'm getting chills just thinking about the noise right now. Puke on me, douse me with amniotic fluid, bleed on me, pee on me, but for heaven's sake don't expectorate in my vicinity.


216 Posts

Specializes in Emergency Nursing.
I could never assist with circumcision *shudder*

Haha when I was doing my mother baby clinicals back in school we were watching a circumcision as a group and someone just straight passed out and hit the floor while watching! He was a guy of course ?