Jump to content

What's the craziest order you've ever seen?


Specializes in Acute post op ortho. Has 30 years experience.

In 22 years of nursing in everything from acute post op ortho to home health, I've read some real doozies. One of the facilities where I worked, we had MD residents that, I swear, with God as my witness, must have secretly worked for Chaos. Charts coming from the ER with 6 residents writing contradicting orders, we'd have to get them together so they could decide on what flavor IV & so on. You get the point.

For me there were 2 orders that left me in stitches.

"HHH enema" Because I'm not one for vagueness, I felt compelled to call the MD. He got huffy & asked "just WHAT don't you understand??" My answer?

"How high is high, how hot is hot & just how much is a hell-of-a-lot?" I swear I could hear him scratching his head when he replied "good question."

But, my all time favorite came from a pulmonologist that was famous for his poor handwriting. I consulted ever nurse, RT & unit secretary in the hospital. He was a notoriously grumpy man, and I dreaded calling him for clarification, but it had to be done. The order read....

"Suspect impaction, seek & destroy."

I've seen things like "FTD" (fixin to die) & "PITA" (pain in the ass) usually in reference to family members.

What's your most memorable?

ohmeowzer RN, RN

Specializes in ob/gyn med /surg.

i have 2 crazy orders.

for a k level of 7.2 " please give lisinopril 20mg po for low k level" aah yeah someone didn't get enough sleep last night !! of we called the doc and he was embarrssed...lol... that would of been very very bad .... ooh yeahhh... wrong wrong and wrong doc !!!

the other order for a new mom with hemmroids " prep H suppository one up each nostril ( per nos instead of per rectum) for hemmroids. " i almost ****** my pants laughing !! i scanned it to the pharamacy and they laughed too.

ohmeowzer RN, RN

Specializes in ob/gyn med /surg.

oh they bleeped me ... i'm sorry that wasn't a swear word,, it was another word. first time i've ever been bleeped...


Specializes in private duty/home health, med/surg. Has 10+ years experience.

An order for a hug, q shift. :rolleyes:

Edited to add: no, this wasn't a pediatric patient!


Specializes in Acute post op ortho. Has 30 years experience.

An order for a hug, q shift. :rolleyes:

Edited to add: no, this wasn't a pediatric patient!

That's something we could all use q shift. I'm not convinced one is enough.

We used to have a doc who was actually a well educated and cultured man, but loved to put on a persona of a country bumpkin. When he wanted to order a social service consult, he would just write one word: "socialize"

It was OK as long as you knew him.

Better than the orders, were his H&P, wherein he would really play up the "good ol' boy" thing. The uptight people who review these things would never put up with it today.

I have a favorite memory of one that started:

"Chief complaint: This old gal hasn't been doin too good lately."

And finished with:

"Plan: I guess we'll just watch her and hope to glory she don't get no worse"

I used to work at a building with an attached LTC and assisted living. They were owned by the same company but operated separately, each with their own staff, managers, and most importantly (of course) hair dressers.

One of the residents decided she liked the look of the hair of people from assisted living and wanted her hair done there. Administration said she couldn't (I honestly don't remember exactly why but something to do with they didn't want all the LTC people going over there to get their hair done).

Every time the doctor came in she would follow him in her motorized wheelchair and complain about the hair situation.

Finally one night he grabbed her chart and wrote, "THIS WOMAN MAY HAVE HER HAIR DONE ANYPLACE SHE WANTS!"

CABG patch kid, BSN, RN

Specializes in Telemetry, CCU.

I've only been a nurse for a year so I'm sure I'll see some crazier orders in the future, but so far the best was "Pt may have a beer or whiskey with dinner".

The best part was the look on people's faces when they would come in the nurse's station and see a really big bottle of Jim Bean!

Not so much a funny one, but memorable:

Medical cards floor, rarely getting surgical patients. A colleague got an order "Straight cath Q1hr."

Straight cath without a bladder scan, palpated bladdder or patient complaint? Every hour?! Are you STONED?

RN calls MD, who argues about how urine sitting in the bladder can lead to infection (Lap Chole, BTW). RN says "I don't follow your reasoning, neither do any other staff members here." MD says "Your orders are to straight cath. Do not scan, just do as you're told." RN says "I've discussed it with the patient and she is refusing." MD says "I'll go talk to her." It's 3am! Are you SURE you aren't stoned?

MD sends a message 25 mins later saying (more or less) "Spoke with patient. Follow instruction as ordered. Patient will not refuse." RN thinks something smells fishy, goes to see patient, patient is scared, tells the RN "I don't want Cancer." Wait...what?! Did that doc share her weed with you?

This goes round and round, MD threatening RN, RN shaky but standing firm. Charge finally calls a bigwig MD at home, thinking she (the bigwig) will be awake at 5am anyway to come to work. Bigwig was in bed, taking the day off for her anniversary. Charge apologizes, bigwig demands an explanation, charge gives it, bigwig is at the scene 20 minutes later, in sweatpants and parka, to chat with patient.

I've never actually seen brimstone, but I think I smelled it that morning.


Specializes in LTC/MDS/PPS. Has 25 years experience.

I've seen a couple..

From a Doc holding clinic in a state prison

"DNS. NFT. Return to cell" ("Don't need S**t, Not a F*****g thing"...he wound up explaining that order to the state.

The funniest one I've ever taken. I wrote and sent the order to the Doc. "Per MBSS, honey thickened liquids at all times, crush meds, may mix to thicken" (per our unit protocol).

Doc (an old codger), writes back in large block letters....THIS WOMAN IS NOT TO HAVE HONEY, SHE IS DIABETIC.

blondy2061h, MSN, RN

Specializes in Oncology. Has 15 years experience.

"Titrate fentanyl up to keep respiratory rate below 6."Uhm, last I checked, physician assisted suicide was illegal.


Has 10 years experience.

An order for a hug, q shift. :rolleyes:

Edited to add: no, this wasn't a pediatric patient!

this made me laugh right out loud. My husband just asked me what was funny! :yeah:


Specializes in LTC. Has 4 years experience.

I saw a radiology report from an x-ray of the abd that read FOS. Enema till clear.

FOS = Full of S***


Has 10 years experience.

I once saw an order that said, "please make patient a small birthday cake, today is his birthday".

Hmmmm - let me whip out my oven and chef's hat and get right on that, doc.

Roy Fokker, BSN, RN

Specializes in ER/Trauma.

I still chuckle everytime I recall the "Activity: Up ad lib" order on the 89 year old hip fracture pt... :)


RochesterRN-BSN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Psych, ER, Resp/Med, LTC, Education. Has 6 years experience.

I had a VERY, VERY sticky patient one time---like the ones you literally prep before you in with everything set up allowing you to run in holding your breath and do everything without taking a breath! Amazing how fast you can run in, flush an IV and throw up a bag of ABX and get out all in one breath!! So this guy smells so bad I used the citrus peri-spray for his whole body since he refused to shower!! did that in one breath too!! LOL

Okay so the doc goes in--forwarned that this patient stinks really bad......he says yes, thanks...it'll be fine...comes running out asking where the face masks are then finishes and leaves writing an order before he leaves---- "Place room odorizer in patients room and bathroom please STAT!" seriously an ORDER for this!!! lol

Edited by RochesterRN-BSN


Specializes in Obstetrics & Gynecology,Medical/Surgical. Has 8 years experience.

I once saw an order that said, "please make patient a small birthday cake, today is his birthday".

Hmmmm - let me whip out my oven and chef's hat and get right on that, doc.

Wow. I'm just impressed that a physician even noticed it was the patient's birthday, let alone cared enough that the patient should be recognized for it!


Specializes in Telemetry & Obs.

Once during NS I had a post op patient with a penile implant that caused some major swelling. So the urologist wrote an order to "Apply ice to balls PRN". My instructor got such a kick out of it...everytime she saw me she'd ask was it time to apply ice?! :D

Poor guy, though, he was in some intense pain :(

This topic is now closed to further replies.