Would you ever ask another nurse to give your pt a suppository?


  1. Would you ever ask another nurse to insert a suppository into your pt?

    • No. I would feel guilty and would delegate another nursing responsibility to them instead.
    • Yes, I dont want to do it either!
    • Yes, but I would feel guilty/bad about it.
    • Yes, to help teammate since turning patient on side for skin assessment.

174 members have participated

I am a skin and wound resource nurse for my unit and I have to do PU prevalence for my unit every wednesday. I have to turn 30 pts and assess their skin for PUs and clean BMs with the nurse if we find them, I even change dsgs for them of it is a PU underneath. I was taken aback when I was asked by 2 nurses yesterday "while im on that side can you place this suppository?" These are the only 2 favors I was asked to do all day also. I felt put on the spot and taken advanage of - I have never thought of asking another nurse to do this for me, I tend to think that people would prefer to do this as minimally as possible and you are expected to do the dirty work for you own pts. What do you think? Was I being a poor sport about it or were they taking advantage of me?


10,357 Posts

Specializes in NICU, PICU, Transport, L&D, Hospice. Has 44 years experience.

I wouldn't be offended or upset about administering a suppository because I was in a better position to do so during the turn and clean. However, it is nice if those sort of functions are discussed in the preturn planning of the care so that I have an opportunity to know exactly what I am giving and why for my professional needs and documentation purposes.

I am not a fan of "that's not my job" mentality in a team environment.


5,978 Posts

Specializes in Oncology; medical specialty website.

I couldn't answer the poll because you left out the option of not having a problem with giving it. You were only asked twice to help, and yet you felt put upon?


38,333 Posts

I would have had no problem because I see the convenience of doing something when the chance presents itself. Why turn and reposition the patient twice, when you can get two tasks completed with only disturbing the patient once?


119 Posts

Specializes in corrections and LTC. Has 25 years experience.

I would ask to come in and insert the suppository myself while the pt was on their side.

Emergent, RN

2 Articles; 4,078 Posts

Specializes in ER. Has 30 years experience.

Putting in a suppository is one of the simpler nursing tasks. You were there in perfect position, you are a nurse, so it makes a whole lot of sense to ask you to do it.


201 Posts

Has 1 years experience.

Taken advantage of for placing a suppos when you were already back there? Nope not at all. I would consider you being taken advantage of if they handed you all there medications and said hey can you administer these and do there assessment while you're with them. I have inserted suppositories for other nurses, because I was in the better position to do so during repositioning. I have also had other nurses help me out and do the same. Thankfully, we are all team players and see that every patient is our patient regardless of the assignment.

roser13, ASN, RN

6,504 Posts

Specializes in Med/Surg, Ortho, ASC. Has 17 years experience.

Putting the patient first, of course I would do it, and do it cheerfully. I seriously don't understand how you felt put out? What a small request and so easy to do.

I also did not answer your poll because an appropriate answer was not available.


1,526 Posts

Has 6 years experience.

Yes - you are being unreasonable. If you're turning the patient and have them on their side, there is absolutely no reason why you can't insert a suppository.

Specializes in Gerontology. Has 37 years experience.

I never considered that giving a suppository was dirty work. You have the diaper open, and the patient on their side. It takes, what, 10 seconds to put the supp in. Instead,you want to wait until you are done and have reapplied yge diaper and repositioned the pt. the nurse then comes back in, re opens the diaper, turns the pt again and gives the supp.

Has 33 years experience.

I would have no problem administering a suppository.

Have a feeling you are difficult to work with. Do you ever get those vibes?

KelRN215, BSN, RN

1 Article; 7,349 Posts

Specializes in Pedi. Has 16 years experience.

I don't see the issue. You are already back there. Administering a suppository takes 3 seconds.