Nurse jargon feels like alphabet soup

I rather like the ‘You know you’re a nurse’ blog posts. It definitely pokes humor at the unique nature of our profession. While Acronyms sure aren’t exclusive to the nursing profession, we sure do see our fair share of them! Heck, I’d dare say we see too much of them!
This is one of those situations where you really cannot understand or appreciate the humor unless you happen to be a nurse or a health care professional. The following paragraph is something that we might actually write, read or say nonchalantly during a typical day on the job. You know you’re a nurse when you can understand this jargon:

44 YR male. History COPD, CHF, HTN, CAD, AFIB. Previous surgeries of CABG X4, R TKR, L THR. Also history of MRSA, VRE. Pt c/o of CP, SOB. JVD also present. Admit from ED for possible PE vs MI. Have not R/O PE or DVT. Labs: Trop, CBC, BMP BNP pending. Scheduled for CT, MRI probable. Cardiology consulted for possible TTE after EKG with numerous PVCs, PACs. No VTACH, but widening QRS and questionable prolonged QT. No U wave noted.

Pt became confused in ED. SPO2 89%declined fast. No history of CVA. Desaturated. Pt intubated. ETT placed. Vent setting AC 12, TV 450, FIO2 50%, PEEP 5. SPO2 95%. EEG will be ordered per PCP’s CRNP. Covering MD also notified. On call PA-C present.

If CVA confirmed, possible EVD placement.

I &O recorded. No BM.

OK. OK. Now my lil paragraph there doesn’t make a great deal of sense for those of us who understand the jargon (take it with a grain of salt please), but you get the idea. I spit out that ‘mock’ scenario in 5 minutes using all those acronyms from memory. If I sat here long enough I could keep adding more. The list is really endless.

Just imagine how the layperson feels whenever we talk to colleagues or fellow health care professionals in our native tongue.

Take this quiz on healthcare acronyms then share your favorites in the comments!

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