The Fecal Queen

Today was a much better day. I’ve really bonded with my patient, and am
getting more comfortable with everything I have to do. His mom, for the
first time in almost a month, left the hospital without another family
member present in her son’s room!! Yay for me (that she trusts me this
much) and for her- she needed to get away for awile!

 I have a few cute stories for you:

Yesterday,
I helped my friend Rachel clean up her patient who had diarrhea all
over himself. He was an adorable elderly man, and he was very confused.
He knew we were there and working with him, but I don’t think he
realized he had made a mess, or what we were doing. This fact became
clear when we had him rolled onto his side, and when I asked if he was
ok, his response was, "Would you like to hear a science joke?" Uh..
sure? Unfortunately, he did not actually have a science joke for us.
Patients can say the most random things at the weirdest moments!

Today,
Rachel was in the room with her patient (same one from story above). He
was doing completely fine until Danielle walked in. All of the sudden,
he started breathing heavy, and Rachel asked, "Are you having trouble
breathing?!"  He responded, "I am having trouble breathing. But
I’m not having trouble pooping!" Rachel lifted up the sheet and once
again, there was diarrhea everywhere.
A few hours later, Rachel
was  working with her patient when Danielle came in to see if she
needed help. Pretty soon, the patient had diarrhea. Somehow Danielle
must have a laxitive effect on our patients! As a result, Danielle has
been forbidden from entering any of our patient’s rooms, and earned the
nickname The Fecal Queen!

After flushing my patient’s feeding
tube with water today, I remembered to turn the feeding tube back on (I
forgot to do this yesterday, and was made fun of by his mom). I walked
around to the other side of my patient to help him feed himself (he has
a feeding tube & eats a little on his own). Well, fifteen minutes
later, I walk back around the bed, and there is a puddle on the floor.
I see the liquid food dripping, but can’t figure out where it is coming
from. Is there a hole in the tube? Is there a problem with the
connection between the food jar and the tube? Nope. Then it hits me, I
had hung the connection part of the tube up at the top of the IV pole
and although I turned the machine back on, I did not remember to
connect the tube to my patient. The food was dripping all the way down
all over everything. Oops! I quickly fixed my mistake and cleaned up
the mess. My patient was laughing at me. At least I brightened his day,
right?

When a patient is considered a "fall risk", there is a
red sign put on their door, and everyone who walks by is required to
peek in and make sure the patient is not trying to get out of bed. I
peeked into a fall risk patient’s room today, and saw the guy at the
end of his bed trying to stand up. I ran over to him and said, "What
are you doing?!" He replied, "I was just about to lay myself down."
Sure you were. Reminds me of a little kid whose face is covered with
chocolate, saying "I don’t know what happened to all the candy!" 
I stayed and talked with the man for a few minutes, and he was a really
friendly guy. When I told him my name was Katie, he said that my name
scared him. Never heard that before! So I asked him why, and he
replied, "From that awful Hurricaine Katie!!" Geez! I should have
known….  LOL 

Flapping in the wind
This is an
image I will never forget~ While eating lunch in the cafeteria, I
looked out the window and saw a middle aged man smoking a cigarette.
Well, this man happened to be a patient. Wearing nothing but his
hospital gown (yes, they still make them where they don’t close in the
back). Still attached to his IV pole. Smoking a cigarette!? That is
what I call dedication.

And just in case you were wondering,
my patient stood up with Physical Therapy five times today!!! Yeah!!!!
It normally takes three therapists to get him up, but today, it only
took two. He’s getting stronger! I am really proud of him.
When I
went in to his room this morning and he was sleeping, I watched as he
would grab his paralyzed arm with his good arm, shake his paralyzed
arm, and whimper. This was heartbreaking to see, especially for his
mom. I really hope he keeps his determination and gets better!

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8 thoughts on “The Fecal Queen

  1. It\’s been a while since I went through my medical training, and its refreshing to see your enthusiasm for what you do. We desperately need good nurses like you who care. I hope you never lose the excitement of helping another human being. Be well,J.

  2. geez!!! I bet people tell you that are an angel! What a NURSE! I do remember a 300lb lady that crapped all the time. She was mean and would play in it before letting us know. We would always try and catch her before she made the big mess. You are honestly a god send to these people and sounds like you are doing a wonderful job. I take "frova" for migraines. It works great. Migraines will KNOCK me down if I don\’t get control when they first start. There are several good medications (duh, you probably know this lol) you don\’t have to suffer with them. Good luck and god bless!

  3. Good for you in earning Mom\’s trust. That\’s a hard one, too. And thank you for your comments on my blog. Girl, that did startle me! Flying teeth! Beware! ha ha

  4. Thanx for stopping by. Now, as for YOUR site…OMG!! You are SOOO FUNNY! I know those poor souls need help, but you must have a sense of humor to work there. The "fecal queen"!!! PRICELESS!!! I\’ll be back when I have more time.

  5. I never knew what that red sign was for! The NERVE! LOLOL!!! I hate the idea of anyone having to empty a commode, so I was always trying to use the regular bathroom, and heaven help anyone who tries to give me a bedpan. Of course, I am still able to make those decisions. I knew that the yellow sign was for isolation but I didn\’t know about the red one.I admire you so much, Katie. This kind of thing is why I think nurses are the angels of the world.The "Fecal Queen" is simply priceless and I\’m glad you can let out some of the stresses of this with humor.When I was very young, I worked as a clerk for a summer at a county hospital in what they called "dormitory wards," where they kept the homeless before California turned them all out in the street. Sometimes i would go on the wards and there was one old gal who always slept with her naked bum out from under the sheets, with her "" showing. I would always ask the nurse if I should cover her, out of respect for her dignity, and she would say yes. So I would cover her and she would wake up screaming bloody murder and scare me to pieces. Then she would uncover her bum again and go back to sleep. It was quite unnerving for me.Hugs,MuMo

  6. Thank God for people like you! I never could do any part of your job, besides driving to work. You are amazing, and I\’m sure your patients appreciate your care.I just spent the week teaching a junior high math class, which is also a job most people can\’t imagine doing. A lot of drama, but thankfully no diarhea.

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