Check out my guest blog post on Nurse Teeny’s blog, Makings of A Nurse. Nurse Teeny has an excellent blog where she documents her nursing experiences. She is planning to pursue a nurse practitioner degree in the near future.
A Day In The Life of An ER Nurse Practitioner
Working in the ER, my shifts are usually at odd hours. Today I work from 6pm to 2am which I actually enjoy as it leaves the morning and afternoon free. I spend an hour at the gym, return home to have breakfast and do a few chores around the house. I write a blog entry for MidlevelU. Then, I meet a friend for lunch, read a book on my porch and get ready for work. Already a great day and my shift at the hospital hasn’t even started.
I arrive at work a few minutes early and immediately start seeing patients. The ER seems to be constantly busy. My first patient is a 40 year old male with abdominal pain. I pick up his chart, go into the rom and observe him writhing in pain. Kidney stones. After two years in the ER I can usually diagnose them within seconds. I order him pain medication along with a CT scan and some lab work to verify my initial diagnosis.
My next patient is a 25 year old female involved in a rollover MVA (Motor Vehicle Accident). She is complaining of right wrist pain. I remove the rudimentary splint the paramedics have placed to examen her wrist more closely. Her wrist is swollen, bruised and deformed. I suspect a fracture and order pain medications and an X-Ray.
Then, I move on to my third patient, a 42 year old male who was doing construction on his home and has gotten a nail stuck in his index finger. He was unable to remove the nail on his own and suspects it is in the bone. I order an X-Ray to confirm his suspicions and find they are correct. I then attempt to remove the nail by pulling it with hemostats. It is stuck so far into the bone, I have to enlist the help of a male physician . After successfully removing the nail, I write the patient a script for antibiotics, update his tetanus vaccine and send him home with strict instructions to return immediately if signs of infection develop.
In the ER, I never know what each day will bring. I see patients with chest pain, abdominal pain and orthopedic problems. I do procedures such as drain abscesses and suture lacerations. I enjoy the variety and challenges my job provides. I learn new things everyday. I love my job and highly recommend the nurse practitioner career.