c. Verify That The Rectal Route Should Be Used. Any situation that will
prevent you from taking the patient's rectal temperature with a glass thermometer will
also prevent you from taking his rectal temperature with an electric thermometer.
d. Verify Patient's Identity. Make sure that you are taking the temperature of
the proper patient.
e. Prepare Thermometer. Make sure that the electric thermometer is working
and ready to use.
f. Tell the Patient About Procedure. Tell the patient that you are going to take
his temperature rectally. Explain to the patient how he is to position himself (paragraph
g). Inform him before inserting or removing the probe.
g. Position Patient. Have the patient to lie on his side with his top knee flexed
in the Sims's position. Arrange the patient's clothing and bed sheet so that the rectal
area is clearly exposed, but the patient is not unnecessarily exposed.
h. Prepare Lubricant. Place some of the lubricant onto a gauze pad. If the
lubricant must be transferred from a jar or similar container, use a tongue depressor or
similar instrument to put the lubricant onto the pad.
Cover Probe. Insert the rectal probe into a probe cover.
j. Lubricate Probe Cover. Put the tip of the probe into the lubricant. Then use
the gauze pad to spread lubricant over the lower part of the probe cover. Dispose of the
gauze pad after the probe cover is lubricated.
k. Insert Probe. Insert the probe into the patient's rectum using the following
Tell the patient that you are going to insert the thermometer probe.
(2) Using your free hand, lift the patient's upper buttock slightly, so that the
anus is clearly exposed.
Have the patient take a deep breath and then release the breath.
Insert the lubricated tip of the probe through the anus opening.
(5) Continue to gently insert the probe until one to two inches of the probe
has been inserted.