I've been working in the OR for about 4 years now, ever since I graduated with my BSN. Over the past year and a half or so, I've been having some neurological problems here and there. It started out with some numbness that would randomly go away, so it didn't really affect me until more recently. Last summer I got the numbness in my left elbow and it spread to my hand and even up into my chest area. It was preventing me from gripping the way I'd like (and I'm left handed) and I was having trouble inserting foleys. I either adapted to it or it lessened enough to where I can still feel the loss of sensation, but it no longer affects my job anymore. A couple months ago, I noticed that something was happening to my left leg. Now, whenever I've been walking around too much (which really doesn't take that long for me), I notice that my leg gets really tired and I'm practically dragging it around until I can sit down and rest to get it back to normal. Working 12 hour shifts in the OR, there are times my job gets very difficult and I'm afraid I won't be able to do my job anymore. I'm pretty sure I'm going to be diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, but I've still got a few weeks before I see a new neurologist to get the ball rolling on that diagnosis.
I love the OR, but I'm afraid that I just can't keep up with the job anymore, and I'm only 27. I actually was offered a job at a smaller OR, but I turned it down because I knew I would fail the physical exam and I wasn't going to take that chance. I've also applied for a position in education, which I would be really good at, but I've been waiting and so far nobody has called me about it. OR is all I know, and I've never had any kind of supervisory experience or anything up to this point. Are there any other nursing jobs that would be good for someone like me who just can't handle the physical demand of being on your feet and walking around all day long?