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Nursing - How To Remove Stubborn Rings

So I've come across this multiple times working in the ICU.   A patient comes to you intubated and sedated...and with multiple rings on that are cutting off the circulation to their fingers! Thanks for fluid resuscitation, right!?

First try using lotion.  Lube up the patient's finger and twist the ring around in a circle.  Pull back slightly and twist simultaneously until it (hopefully) comes off.  Obviously if you are resorting to desperate measures with rings it is because the ring is totally stuck!

Nursing Tip: This can be very painful for the patient so if they have pain medications that you can give, it would probably be a good idea.

If the lotion does not work, this should hopefully do the trick.  I recently had a patient that was wearing a very thick band that looked like there was no possible way to get it off.  Then the string ring removal trick comes into play.  It totally works!  This is super painful, but at least you don't have to cut the ring off of the patient.  Here is a short video that I found that gives a great summary of how to get rings off.  It might take some finessing, but it should work!

This guest blog post by Courtney Tracy first appeared in From New To ICU.

Courtney is an experienced ICU nurse and the creator of From New to ICU. She enjoys helping nurses at all stages of their careers, from getting into nursing school, learning new skills or even searching for their first nursing job! Follow the links to learn and read more from Courtney.

Courtney is one of the members of our Affiliate Program, you may see our continuing education courses on her site From New to ICU. To support From New to ICU click on the course title of interest from the blog link. 

Posted: 6/27/2017 9:00:00 PM
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