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Thursday, August 6, 2009


She sat in a chair next to her mother's bed. Her mom was a long time smoker/ old alcoholic with a boat load of problems, the least of which was her Hepatitis which caused her skin to turn yellow.

The daughter said: "This is a breathing treatment, mom. It's going to help get some of the fluid out of your lungs so you can breath better."

"No it's not," I said bluntly.

"Oh, well, it's going to make your heart pump better so you can breath better."

"No it's not," I said, bluntly.

"Oh, that's what the doctor said?" She looked at me blankly.

"Well," I said, "I guess the doctor was wrong then. This medicine is a bronchodilator that dilates the bronchioles if your mom is having bronchospasm."

"Oh... Oh, okay..."

The funny thing is, I don't doubt the doctor did tell her that. The unfunny thing is I get tired of explaining this every day.

1 comment:

G√ľnnar said...

you know, i deal with this a lot. i'm a nurse at a long term care facility, and breathing treatments are the first thing ordered when something "just isn't right" about a patient's lung sounds.

me, during report. "why is mrs. smith on the med neb?"

reporting nurse. "oh, she was coughing last night."

me:"that's it?"

reporting nurse: "it helps!"