Tuesday, December 7, 2010


Sometimes I want to hate doctors for no reason. Sometimes I probably wouldn't hate them for whatever if I actually understood what their reasoning is for things. This is probably one of those times. There must be a perfectly good reason for requiring a clean-catch urine sample to diagnose a UTI even if the patient has had UTI's in the past and the care staff can easily recognize the signs. Even if the nurse could do a dip on a regular sample or send that out to the lab for verification.

(note: UTI = urinary tract infection; little old ladies get these a lot and they can cause pain, low-grade fever and increased confusion. They're fixable with antibiotics.)

But it seems stupid and mean to me, the lowly caregiver, that we have to hold still a really sweet lady with dementia, and the nurse has to put in a catheter for a few seconds so we can get that elusive clean-catch urine sample. We were all almost in tears at the end of it; I held one hand and food, a coworker held the other two, the nurse did the cath, and another caregiver held the light for the nurse so she could do it as fast and accurately as possible. Our poor resident was upset, we were upset, and I thought the Doctor Is Stupid. We got our resident cleaned up and into jammies and tucked into bed, and then she was okay.

I hope there's some good reason for this though. Or if not, that we don't have to do this to my poor resident again.

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