Brain for NICU nurses

I’ve finally come up with something that works for me in the NICU to remember what I need to remember and keep me on track during the day. My med-surg brains were certainly not going to work in the NICU. I needed something simple that could change throughout the day in case of admits, discharges, and so on.  Continue reading

Yet another brain

This is the brain I use for night shift. I write down meds due at the corresponding time, and time-specific tasks, like d/c lipids drip, d/c foley, accuchecks, dressing change. I bubble in circles when I complete tasks, and use the extra space to make other notes to myself like wife’s name, takes meds with cranberry juice, or whatever.


5-patient nights brain

Post op delirium

Post op delirium for nursesI’ve seen post op delirium in so many of my patients – especially hip surgeries, and of those, especially after a fracture. It’s distressing to me, as a nurse, but even more distressing to my patients’ families. We tell them it’s temporary. We tell them it’s common. We tell them we know exactly what we’re doing. But the truth is, delirium is scary.

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New nursing brain for high turnover areas

8 pt shift sheetDo you use a nursing brain? I’ve always used a 5-patient brain and it’s worked really well for me. Specifically, it works really well when I have a constant patient load during the shift. But on the ortho floor I have a lot of days when I start out with 5 patients, discharge 4-5 of them, then get new patients throughout the shift. I was never able to reorganize my day once I started getting new admits. Hmph.  Continue reading

Transfusion Reaction Chart

Transfusion ReactionsIf I didn’t have my charts and graphs handy at work I’m not sure how I’d get through the day. As a new grad nurse, I need reminders of what to look for and why. When my employer gave us an 8-page in-service packet on blood transfusion reactions I knew I’d need it in a handier format. With that in mind, here ya go.

Transfusion Reactions <– Click to download

Labs and interpretations

Lab values & interpretations

I keep a clipboard with me at work, with my “brain,” frequently used phone numbers, a few checklists for things like new admissions, discharges, and so on, and my handy-dandy lab interpretation sheet. A clinical instructor gave me something like this years ago, and I’ve edited it over the years to make it more helpful to me. It includes the normal values, a brief description, and – most important – what would cause those numbers to go up or down. So, for your clinical pleasure, feel free to download below.

Lab Interpretations <– Click there to download

Nurse brain

It seems that every nurse has a “brain” sheet that works for them. As an ortho nurse, this is mine. It’s pretty standard for the day shift I usually work. Feel free to download, edit, and repurpose for your setting.

Download the Word doc here:  5pt shift sheet

5 patient brain