Any Pregnant ER nurses out there?

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    Hi....I just wanted to get some input from others that are/have been pregnant while working in the ER and how it was on you. I am almost 25 weeks and planning on working until I go in for my C-section. So far, it's been ok. I notice I am a little more tired and I have occasional nights that my back is sore. But the plus side is that I've noticed family members not treating me like a waitress as much... ..... they look at my belly and refrain from asking for coffee or a soda. The other night, I was called to a room to scoot grandma up in bed (g'ma weighed a ton)... and the daughter looked at me and told her huge hulking son of about 20 y/o to get up and do it. Why they don't do that in the first place is beyond me...but at least they do have SOME decency left for pregnant women. I am considering a "strap-on belly" when I go back to work after my maternity leave.
    Anyway, did ya'll work the entire time? If not, when did you have to cut back hours and/or stop working? How did being pregnant have an effect on your job?
    Thanks!
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    Hahaha...I think I might have to get myself one of those strap-on bellies - Hey, that's what I want for my Nurses Day present!!

    One of my friends who is about 19 weeks pregnant is planning on working right up until she has the baby, although her doctor may take her off 12's and only allow her to work 8's toward the end. Or take her off totally, depending on how she does. Her first baby was stillborn at 28 weeks, she's had hyperemesis both times and takes enough Zofran and Phenergan for a chemo pt, plus is on heparin shots this time...so I guess we shall see.

    She actually just left our ER and went to MICU at a heart hospital...our conditions have been especially bad lately, and she just didn't want to deal with it anymore, esp with being pregnant. Now she at least gets to sit down to chart and doesn't have to run all up and down the whole ER all night.

    Congratulations!
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    We have several pregnant nurses-I think there is something in the water! They all plan on working until the end, unless they have complications.
    On this note, does anyone have a policy regarding pregnant nurses in triage? We always thought there was one that you can't triage during the first trimester, but it turned out to be a myth. Now it is up to the individual nurse, but I think we should find out for sure. I work in a peds ED, so we get a lot of coxsackie and a large group of our sickle cell pts carry parvo. Just wondering!
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    I worked full time in the ER and part time pediatric home care when I was pregnant. I planned on working both jobs up until my due date, however my son was in a big hurry and decided to be born at 35 weeks instead...I had just finished up a night shift at my home care job (more like private duty) and came home and "just didn't feel right" 12 hours later...I had a child...lol...I was tired but it wasn't too bad...I think I'm more tired now working full time ER and being a marathon runner to keep up with the 4 year old...We also have quite a few nurses pregnant right now...I stopped drinking the water a LONG time ago....I'm not quite ready for another one yet!!
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    Hi Leah,

    Congrats on your pregnancy! My water actually broke while I was working my last shift (4 days before my due date), while I was pregnant with my second child (he was born in October). I actually had problems with this pregnancy so I was out for 3 months during my second trimester but was allowed to go back to work. I worked 12 hour night shifts on the weekends and really had no problems (besides being really irritable towards the end).

    My 1st pregnancy, I worked 40 hours per week - dayshift- and carried right up until the end, also. The only thing I did different during that pregnancy was I didn't work 12-hour shifts anymore during the last month.

    Just make sure you stay well-hydrated and be very careful with heavy-lifting (don't do it if you don't have to). Also, be careful when assisting with certain procedures such as providing countertraction during shoulder reductions - it might be too much strain on your body.
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    My baby was born on Feb 1 of this year; I worked a 12 hour shift on Jan 29. It was rough! I found myself getting very tired and extremely cranky during the last 6 weeks or so. My coworkers were great about helping me with things, but it was really hard to work right up to the birth.
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    Thanks for the input........I'm seeing my doctor tomorrow and we'll discuss the whole 12/8 hour shift toward the end of pregnancy thing. My co-workers have been great. They actually scold me if they see me even emptying linens and I am assigned triage alot lately...even though we all know that while it's not as "physical" as the back, it can wear you out psychologically! :uhoh21:

    As far as the first trimester/triage thing, I don't know if it's "official" but I agree, I don't think it's wise to be exposed to everything that walks in the door at that time of pregnancy. Again, my co-workers (charge nurses) helped out a lot with not assigning me risky pts.

    Thanks for the feedback...this is a great site!!
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    rudeness is the weak person's imitation of strength~eric hoffer
    Last edit by LeahJet on May 6, '05
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    I'm not pregnant my self, but my wife is :chuckle This is our second. During her first pregnancy, she worked full time flying (10, 24hr shifts/month) and part-time in the ED (some 12's, mostly 8's). She flew into her 7th month, although she now says she pushed it a little. (Got to where she couldn't see her boots) She continued to work in the ED until she delivered. Literallly!! We were both on duty in the ED when she went into labor. Luckily, we were working at the hospital where we planned on delivering. She went to L&D, got checked-in and when they started the Pitocin, I was able to get off from the ED and go to L&D.

    One thing she said was a life- (and back) saver was the maternity support (or like I called it, the BABY SLING).

    Good luck. Don't push yourself too hard.
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    Quote from shadowflightnurse
    I'm not pregnant my self, but my wife is :chuckle This is our second. During her first pregnancy, she worked full time flying (10, 24hr shifts/month) and part-time in the ED (some 12's, mostly 8's). She flew into her 7th month, although she now says she pushed it a little. (Got to where she couldn't see her boots) She continued to work in the ED until she delivered. Literallly!! We were both on duty in the ED when she went into labor. Luckily, we were working at the hospital where we planned on delivering. She went to L&D, got checked-in and when they started the Pitocin, I was able to get off from the ED and go to L&D.

    One thing she said was a life- (and back) saver was the maternity support (or like I called it, the BABY SLING).

    Good luck. Don't push yourself too hard.
    Thanks.....
    I do use a maternity support sometimes when I'm having a "bad back night". Even though I am planning on delivering here, I sure hope I don't go into labor at work like your wife did....but I guess it's handy, huh? Actually, I am to go in for a scheduled C-section after an amnio. @ 36 weeks.
    Anyway, thanks for the input!
    ~Leah
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    I worked ER right up until I delivered. Was tired (duh). My co-workers were great about giving me a hand with the lifting and pulling. Though the bas thing is you just never know what you are walking into with the pts as far as communicable illnesses. We had the bacterial meningitis pt, the kids with the rashes, etc. It definitely made me more careful than ever about universal precautions.


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