Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Today, CF didn't seem so bad...

Too many times in the Nursing field we have to tell patients bad, or grave news. Does it ever get easier? No, absolutely not. We had a patient today that came in to be evaluated for abdominal pain. As a GI Nurse I expect to see the usual, non life threatening findings post operatively. Not today.

She is only 43 years young, and prior to even starting her IV we got bad news. The radiologist called to tell us her CT scans showed cancer "everywhere." It has taken over her entire abdominal cavity, and beyond. I think it may have been one of the saddest cases we've ever seen.

We brought back the family to talk to them which we do with every patient, as they have just been sedated. She knew before the Doctor even spoke. She cried, her parents cried, we cried...There was nothing we could say. She began to gasp for breath and said "This is treatable right? I want to Live." At that moment our hearts were torn in half for her.

I later spoke privately to her doctor and asked him about her prognosis. He said she probably won't be here in 6 months :( It was today that I got some amazing perspective about my disease, my life, and my care. I think we are still numb from this patient, but if anything I tried to put a positive spin on these events, and thought, you know what sometimes CF isn't so bad.

Today's exercise consisted of 25 minutes of jogging on the treadmill.


Stacey said...

I've had a bunch of those moments, since I work in oncology. They are great reminders... However, I sometimes feel like having more medical knowledge can work against us sometimes too. Too much knowledge about what could happen. Sorry about your patient :-( I know how some of them just cling to your heart and you never end up forgetting them.