My Most Memorable Patient

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My Most Memorable Patient

While I no longer remember her name, I will never forget her face. I will never forget the family that was at her bedside that day. By far the most memorable patient I have ever had, was the only one that literally passed away right before my eyes.That moment when she took her very last breath with her husband at her bedside holding her hand will stay with me for a lifetime.
Pain Management: A Top Priority for the Dying Patient

I worked day shift and came into report that fateful day to hear about a dying patient I was assigned. Apparently, she was brought to the hospital from a nursing home because of uncontrolled pain. The doctor who admitted her was notorious for berating a nurse at a moment’s notice and was the head physician at the hospital and ruled the roost (so to speak) and was impossible to please – reportedly.

The off-going nurse was giving me report, and it went something like this:

“She is in there crying and squirming in pain. She is complaining of stomach upset and nausea but not throwing up. There is nothing I can do because her morphine is only ordered every two hours and she just had it about 15 minutes ago and it’s not helping. She is crying and tearful. Husband and family are a bit upset about this.”

Immediately when the nurse left, I reviewed the patient’s medical record and to my surprise, she had Phenergan, an anti-nausea medication, prescribed but it was never given at this point! Not once. I did note the morphine was
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