Surviving OB

  1. I'm about to start my OB clinical and am not looking forward to it. I keep hearing stories about women not wanting male students in the room. This seems like it would be a complete waste of time - I'd rather be in another area where I'm actually doing and learning something.

    That said, I do want to learn as much as I can and try to make it as bearable as possible, since I have no choice. Any advice from guys that have made OB a good experience?
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    About nimartino

    Joined: Mar '11; Posts: 7; Likes: 1


  3. by   chansen
    Don't approach it with the attitude that it's a waste of time, and don't assume you won't be doing or learning anything. Clinicals, in general, are what you make of them. I did 10 weeks of postpartum and L&D and never once had a mother or soon to be mother ask me to leave.

    Be professional, be confident, and don't go in assuming they want you out of the room. Your instructors should be doing a bit of work upfront to make sure any patient you may have is receptive to students. When you enter the room, wash up while simply stating, "Hi, my name is __________, I'm the student nurse that's working with ________ today. I'm going to be doing _____________." Don't be shy, don't ask if they'd rather not have a guy, and be genuine in your desire to assist them in any way you can.

    When not in the room, use the time to talk to the nurses about the uterine contraction strips and match them up to the fetal heart monitor. Learn about what early, late, variable decels look like, what they mean, what your actions are as a nurse without having to get a doctor's order. Ask to see interesting cases, try to see a delivery from both a primagravida and someone who has several kids already. Try to see a scheduled c-section and an emergency c-section. Participate in the nursery to do vaccinations, PKUs, bathing, feeding, and initial assessments. Tick off a postpartum mother by palpating her fundus and checking for beats of clonus. Learn your station, positions, possible complications of pregnancy and delivery and what S/S those produce as well as what nursing actions they require. Learn the underlying causes and reasons of medications used during pregnancy, preeclampsia, postpartum hemorrhage and prevention of hypovolemic shock. The list goes on and on about what you CAN be doing. Now, what you get out of it is up to you.
  4. by   locolorenzo22
    When I was doing my OB clinicals, I had a hard time in the postpartum. Mainly because my instructor had to preface me going in the rooms by asking the moms if they were ok with me helping them. I couldn't answer call lights because of me being a guy. In the nursery, I was a tech basically. Not given the option of helping monitor the baby in the oxygen tent, or the one in the monitored bed. I basically changed diapers, fed the babies, and helped the tech take baby pics. In delivery, I had a patient that I would go in with the nurse, because she was being difficult. However, since I fixed her cable so she could watch her "stories" she let me watch the delivery. WAs a very boring 6 weeks.
  5. by   ckh23
    When I was in school my instructor would try to pair me with a woman that was on their 3rd, 4th, 5th, etc child. They always seemed to be more willing to take on a male student and they were also a wealth of information from all of their experience.
  6. by   RonCA84
    thank you for posting this, begininging my OB/Peds rotation myself and definitely gives me plenty to research on, learn, and observe. And yes, the attitude will always carry one on either side of the spectrum (postive or negative). Thanks!
  7. by   Assailants
    It's acutallyy not so bad...I can see why so many ladies wnna do obgyn
  8. by   MrChicagoRN
    I did my OB rotation over 25 years ago.

    I did everything the women did, including post-partum recovery.

    No issues at all.
  9. by   BostonFNP
    I loved my OB rotation and I was never once asked to not be in the room. A few things I feel liked helped me out:1.) I had a clinical instructor that worked in L&D and pre-screened patients before assigning me the next day in post-partum. 2.) I was always confident when I entered the room. If you act like you shouldn't be there or are awkward, the pt will feel that way too.3.) I had a neonatologist that I spent a lot of time with who called me "his student" and as an MD didn't always ask permission like the RNs did.
  10. by   weavers
    I agree you need to change your attitude.

    I quite enjoyed my OB rotation. I saw a vaginal birth, a C-section, and inserted two foleys catheters. A couple of people refused a male student and my teacher and the charge nurse worked hard to find me opertunities to see something or do something. I found most women didn't mind a male student at all, nor did there husbands.

    I did find the women didn't want me assessing there breast, watching them breast feed, or me teaching them how to breast feed. All the women were, ok fine look down below, check out my hemroids, staples, episiotomy, ect. but they breast they were more senstive about. I understand breastfeeding is a private thing, its one on one time with the baby.

    I learned tons in OB. We had an amazing teacher. Our class learned teamwork and critical thinking. It was just awesome!