New student having troulble with assessment of client

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    I just began my first semester of clinicals about two weeks ago. I have been able to pass 9 out of 12 of the first skills needed to enter the clinical setting. We started to do clients assessments this week but I am having trouble finding pulses!! It is very frustrating and makes me doubt my abilities as a future nurse. Also when trying to remember what to do next and remember the BP, pules rate and resp I get worried and my mind goes blank and I forget everything I just took. I'm wondering if this is just nerves or am I not cut out for this?
    Last edit by dslothour on Jan 26, '13
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  3. 17 Comments so far...

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    I am sure it is just nerves. My advice to you is to practice on everyone you know! I have been taking bps and checking pulses on my husband, my kids...even my dog...lol! Use your family and friends. I bet they would be happy to be your guinea pig
    dslothour likes this.
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    I can't remember that stuff, if I'm not charting it right then and there, like when I'm triaging, I write it down as I go. I have found that writing it out on my glove is quick and easy (just don't forget and toss the glove!). You'll also eventually be able to assess multiple things at once (doing a skin assessment as you check BP, checking the IV site as you listen to heart and lung sounds, etc). It just takes time and practice. I was sooo slow with assessments my first semester, now I'm an ED nurse so I'm in and out of the room in under five minutes. We also only do focused assessments in the ED, so that makes it a bit faster.
    dslothour likes this.
  6. 3
    You will get this! I struggled at first finding pulses and then my clinical instructor taught me how to occlude the artery then slowly/gently let up until you feel the pulse. For me it workes like a charm for those tricky ones that are hard to find/feel. Good luck and it does get easier with practice
    GrnTea, DawnJ, and dslothour like this.
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    Did anyone on a mobile device giggle at how the title of this post appeared?
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    Quote from BostonFNP
    Did anyone on a mobile device giggle at how the title of this post appeared?
    Haha I did!!!
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    Practice on many of your classmates. Aside from that, try doing your assessment in order of systems, from the head to the feet. BP, Resp etc etc you should write down as you go on a small pad of paper so you can look back at it later.
  10. 0
    Quote from limaRN
    Haha I did!!!
    I don't have AN on mobile, what did it say?

    In reply to OP, do not worry in the least. It will get easier and easier. Pulses can be different on everyone, so just take your time and feel around. SOmetimes if its a really hard one to count, like a newborn, it helps to close your eyes or tap your finger with the pulse. And write your info down! I barely try to just remember VS unless I have to for some reason. I thought I wasnt cut out for nursing in my frst semester then had such a great experience my second semester that its just gotten better and better. It will get better most likely
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    Quote from iluvpatho

    I don't have AN on mobile, what did it say?

    In reply to OP, do not worry in the least. It will get easier and easier. Pulses can be different on everyone, so just take your time and feel around. SOmetimes if its a really hard one to count, like a newborn, it helps to close your eyes or tap your finger with the pulse. And write your info down! I barely try to just remember VS unless I have to for some reason. I thought I wasnt cut out for nursing in my frst semester then had such a great experience my second semester that its just gotten better and better. It will get better most likely
    Let's just say the title reads from the start to three letters into "assessment". And it puts the suggestion to practice on classmates into a different framework.
    Last edit by BostonFNP on Jan 26, '13
    GrnTea, sobusynowRN, and OB-nurse2013 like this.
  12. 2
    It reads, "new student having trouble with asses..."
    Last edit by limaRN on Jan 26, '13
    GrnTea and OB-nurse2013 like this.


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