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What can nurses do to better help you?

Posts: 62
Joined: Feb 2004

I am an RN student and I would like to know what the nurses who care for you could do to better help you? I'm anxious to get your feedback! Please reply!

Posts: 6
Joined: Mar 2004

I am a Nurse also, and a survivor of Anal Cancer. I worked with cancer patients in Urology and directly with a Urology Oncologist. Before I was diagnosed with cancer, I was often told by my fellow nurses that I spent too much time with my patients. There is never too much time....patients with cancer or shortly after surgery....need the extra time....you can listen with clean ears, and speak with the knowledge of healing. My Drs. thought that since I was a nurse, I knew everything about cancer and especially my type of cancer. Not so.....I was scared to death. When you are diagnosed with cancer, you think that you are the only one. I honestly thought that I was the only person who had anal cancer. I was too embarrassed to talk to anyone about it, even now on the CSN chat line. But I found out that I was not the only one and once I discussed tx and surviving with other pts.....it felt like a human again. In my 18 years of nursing experience......and now having been thru tx and surgery for cancer.....just spend a little extra time with cancer pts!! Not so much as to get yelled at by your supervisors......because there is not enough time in this world to compensate for what we have gone thru. You have to be strong for us....be up on dxs and txs. When we ask you a question, don't try and conjure up something to look and sound good. We usually know more about the disease than you do. As I said before.....it is embarrassing to have this dx. People wonder what you were doing to get it!!! Be able to discuss with patients.....re: tx and pain. And there is one thing that I have to say.....Don't ever think that a patient is asking for too much medication for pain. There is nothing in this world that is worse than not being medicated properly for pain. If a pt. asks too many times or too soon then the ie. q 4 - 6 hrs, then the medication should be adjusted or even changed. I've been there and if you use your common sense and your love for life and your nurses training.....you will see......patients will be very happy. Good luck in your new career. BS

Posts: 12
Joined: Dec 2004

Hi Hopefulcure, I too am an RN who was diagnosed with anal cancer and felt alone in this world. The advise you gave regarding what nurses can do to better help patients was right on. I couldn't have said it better. I wish you well on you journey.

Lisa1953's picture
Posts: 1
Joined: Jun 2005

I'm also a registered nurse, status-post radiation and chemotherapy and a clean biopsy, but not without it's complications. I wanted to tell you how moved I was by your reply to the student nurse, although I see it was over a year ago. How amazing someone's words can impact another so needful of them later! As a result of my experience I have often thought of how it feels to be on the other side of the call light. Thank you for your inspiration.

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