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Old people should not be given certain stuff....

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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Old people should not be given certain stuff....

Ok, this post will not mean a dang thing to a bunch of y'all. However, let me hear my nurses rep!

There are certain medications that older folks should not be given. Ever. At all. Period. The top two on that list... a sleeper that starts with "A" and a nausea med that starts with "Ph." (Shoot, you dang right I'm bein' cautious.... I don't want those pharmaceutical companies coming after me coz I named their brand...).

Anyway.... here's how it goes. You get a perfectly sensible and sane senior citizen on your medical floor. The doctor prescribes something to help them sleep. The sane and sensible senior swallows the pill with nary a thought. They drop off to sleep. 90 minutes later, sane and sensible has gone out the window! Mr. Senior is now crazy as the proverbial outhouse rat, wide awake and ready to make sure you lose what's left of YOUR mind trying to make sure that he doesn't break a hip climbing over a bedrail....

Not only that, but Mr. Sane Senior (now known as the confused man in 277) has become convinced that he is being held against his will somewhere, though he's not sure where, for some reason, though he's not sure why. One thing he is absolutely certain of is this: YOU ARE THE CULPRIT!! YOU are the enemy... and Lawd help you if he was ever anywhere near Korea in the 50's or VietNam in the 60's, because then, you MUST be a.) the commandant of a POW camp or 2.) a member of the interrogation squad come to torture him.

As an added bonus, Mr. Senior has seemingly lost the ability to keep his clothes anywhere near his body, much less ON his body. IV's will be pulled out. There will be multiple changes of bed linen, and the rest of your patients will be "back burnered" as you attempt to keep Mr. Senior from running his wrinkled hiney up and down the hall boo-booty-ass-nekkid.

Somehow, the nightshift will survive... though how is equal parts miracle and mystery. Come 0700, they will be meeting the dayshift at the daggone door, lookin' like they just went 12 rounds with Muhammed Ali in his prime. Hair every which way, clothes rumpled, dark circles under the eyes, faces pasty and pale. "YOUR TURN!" they cry, as they bolt for their cars.

And do you think it stops? Only NO!! The madness continues unabated. Only now, physical therapy is trying to get in for treatment, the family has arrived and there are food trays to be thrown and played in!! Mrs. Sane Senior shakes her snowy head, and with a perplexed look on her face protests, "I don't understand? This is just so unlike him!!"

Yea, sweetie, I know. That's because it's not him.... it's that nasty little blue pill we gave him at 2100 last night.

And that, my random friends is why old folks and sleeping pills don't mix!

*this is in no way to be interpreted as a single patient event, but a composite of nursing experience*
(o_O I had to side-eye myself for that last statement)

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is why my hair looks the way it does Kay.

July 29, 2009 at 12:06 AM  
Blogger littlepretendnurse said...

this all seems so familiar. Wonder why?....

July 29, 2009 at 1:59 AM  
Blogger amymay said...

All the docs should be made to sign a binding contract in their own blood (after appropriate communicable disease testing, that is) to never order that devil pill for anyone over the age of 50!!

July 30, 2009 at 11:23 PM  
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