20+ years of nursing, I think I should quit?!!

Nurses LPN/LVN


I've been nursing for 20 plus years, I am a good nurse, I think, at least most of the time. I care for my patients, I enjoy working with my patients and I have saved my patients on more than one occassion. However, I have made some really stupid mistakes and have gotten, hmm, lax in some of my duties. How do I measure the good I've done with the bad. Don't worry I've not killed anyone or even come close, but it's so close, you have to be so careful. Maybe I'm just tired, but the latest incident to put me in a tail spin is an elderly resident of mine, that had been confused, then dx. with UTI and we all know what that can do to elderly residents, became more confused and leaning to the side, hallucinating. I assumed it was just the RX and UTI, vitals were good, ate her meals with no difficulty. No acute distress. Shift ended I went home, get a call from my super. today saying I made a bad judgement call, they sent her out 911 this A.M. unresponsive. 8 hours after I left but I was the one that noticed the increase change in mental status, etc. I've made medication errors, no harm, no foul. I'm not a bad person, i've not purposely set out to hurt anyone but now what? Maybe I just need a break so tempted to just walk. But this is all I have done my adult life, no further education, what do i do go flip burgers. Thank God my kids are grown. Has anyone ever been in this position and what did you do?

I think that what you are describing, most of the symptoms could be UTI..You were the first shift to note the changes...I wouldn't be so hard on yourself.

I also think that the sup. may be being too hard on you as well. A full eight hours later the patient was sent out??? What else happened in the span of those 8 hours?? A whole lot can worsen in those full 8 hours!! We are not doctors, and we do not diagnose. No, I do not think that you should quit! Just make sure that you are following policy and procedure, notify MD with changes, and verbally update RN in building. We are all human, mistakes are made at times. Tomorrow is a new day, and this too shall pass.

Specializes in LTC Family Practice.

Sounds like some burn out to me, consider working in a different area of nursing.

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