Nurse Carlos and Mrs. P

I am joining Six Sentence Stories for the first time. The prompt word is skip. I just realize it is more challenging to write a story in only six sentences. For my son, who would type 1.5 pages out of required 2 for a high school assignment, this would have been a breeze. :)

Anyway, I am writing another story of a fictional character, Carlos, RN. My first one is here.  With similarities to my experience with patients, this stories will give you a glimpse of what a shift in intensive care unit looks like. It is gross a lot of times, and not for the squeamish. I apologize.

It is another day. I am once again assigned to Mrs. P who had bleeding on two areas in her esophagus. The areas where embolized yesterday, and she has been stable ever since. She did not throw up any more blood. There is no need to keep her intubated.

We were about to extubate her (remove breathing tube and take off ventilator support)  when bright red blood started coming out of her mouth like water from a hose. 

F! I almost said the word but I just thought it in my mind. 

Immediately, I got her head to the side so she does not aspirate any of it. I  suctioned her mouth with a Yankeur. It is like one of those aspirators they use in the dental office.

We are skipping extubation this morning for sure.

Hours later, after more blood transfusions I rapidly administered, and another endoscopy and interventional-radiology-guided procedures, more spots of her esophagus are coiled and embolized to stop her bleeding.  

Poor Mrs. P. I am sure when she finally fully recovers, she will never take mega home doses of Advil ever again.


I keep her calm and sedated. I hope she stays stable. At least, she made it through my shift without any more blood gushing out of her mouth . .  . yet.

Comments

  1. I am so glad you added a link in your comment on my Six Sentence Story post so that I could come here and find this wonderful story of life as a floor duty nurse. It is very familiar to me because my daughter is also one. I know exactly how you felt when the F-word crossed your mind, here you thought she was stabilized and then another problem appears, that happens often I know, and requires quick thinking and immediate action. I do not know how nurses keep all the information in their heads about what to do, medications, procedures, equipment, etc, it is mind boggling! I am so glad you were able to see her on her way to a full recovery. A small thing can become a critical issue so quickly! I hope you'll share more nurse stories with us in the weeks to come (and thank you for translating the medical terms for us in both of these stories! :-)

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    1. You are so kind, Josie. Thanks for reading. ICU can be exciting, happy, scary, and sad place all in one day.

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