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Secrets nurses keep

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With all the craziness that goes on during any given shift, nurses are bound to have some pretty interesting secrets. Below are 10 secrets nurses never tell their patients shared by Nurse On Duty. Do these secrets ring true for you? Check out the list and add your own in the comments below.

 

 

Dirty Little Secrets:

1. “We’re not going to tell you your doctor is incompetent, but if I say, ‘You have the right to a second opinion,’ that can be code for ‘I don’t like your doctor’ or ‘I don’t trust your doctor.’” — Linda Bell, RN, clinical practice specialist at the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses in Aliso Viejo, California

2. “When a patient is terminally ill, sometimes the doctor won’t order enough pain medication. If the patient is suffering, we’ll sometimes give more than what the doctor said and ask him later to change the order. People will probably howl now that I’ve said it out loud, but you have to take care of your patient.” — A longtime nurse in Texas

What We’re Really Thinking:

3. “Your life is in our hands — literally. We question physicians’ orders more often than you might think. Some of the mistakes I’ve headed off: a physician who forgot to order a medication that the patient was taking at home, a doctor who ordered the incorrect diet for a diabetic, and one who tried to perform a treatment on the wrong patient.” — A nurse from Pennsylvania

4. “People have no idea of the amount of red tape and charting we have to deal with every day. We spend hours at the computer just clicking boxes. They tell us, ‘If it wasn’t charted, it didn’t happen.’ So I always chart with a jury in the back of my mind.” — An intensive-care nurse in California

5. “No matter how many times you use your call light, even if it’s every ten minutes, I will come into your room with a smile. However, if you don’t really need help, I will go back to the nurses’ station and complain, and this may affect how the nurses on the next shift take care of you.” — A cardiac nurse in San Jose, California

What We Lie About:

6. “When you ask me, ‘Have you ever done this before?’ I’ll always say yes. Even if I haven’t.” — A nurse in New York City

What Hurts Our Feelings:

7.In my first nursing job, some of the more senior nurses on the floor refused to help me when I really needed it, and they corrected my inevitable mistakes loudly and in public. It’s a very stressful job, so we take it out on each other.” — Theresa Brown, RN, an oncology nurse and the author of Critical Care: A New Nurse Faces Death, Life, and Everything in Between

What We Love:

8. “If you’ve been a patient in a unit for a long time, come back and visit. We’ll remember you, and we’d love to see you healthy.” — An intensive-care nurse in California

More Things We Want You to Know:

9. “The doctors don’t save you; we do. We’re the ones keeping an eye on your electrolytes, your fluids, whether you’re running a fever. We’re often the ones who decide whether you need a feeding tube or a central line for your IV. And we’re the ones who yell and screech when something goes wrong.” — A longtime nurse in Texas

10. “As a nurse, sometimes you do nothing but run numbers and replenish fluids. Sometimes you’re also the person who reassures the teenager that ‘everybody’ gets her period on the day of admission, the person who, though 30 years younger than the patient, tells that patient without blushing or stammering that yes, sex is possible even after neck surgery. You’re the person who knows not only the various ways to save somebody else’s life but also how to comfort those left behind.” — A longtime nurse who blogs at head-nurse.blogspot.com

Read the rest of the list on the Nurse on Duty.

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2 Responses to Secrets nurses keep

  1. saturn567

    wow this list is amazing. one thing nurses cannot really discuss openly with patients is drug safety because some family members and patients don’t want to hear it, it’s refreshing when someone actually wants to know what they are taking and when they only ask for the ” stronger” medicine when they really are uncomfortable

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