labor nurses' experience in first year of practice

  1. I am currently designing a study about the first year of experience as a labor nurse. If any of you out there have been practicing for about a year, I am interested in your opinions about what has happened to you that surprised you or any other comments about your first year. Do you now feel like you are "competent"? I am trying to design good questions to ask, any suggestions? Thanks Jan
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  2. 5 Comments

  3. by   Darchild77
    Quote from profjanmc
    I am currently designing a study about the first year of experience as a labor nurse. If any of you out there have been practicing for about a year, I am interested in your opinions about what has happened to you that surprised you or any other comments about your first year. Do you now feel like you are "competent"? I am trying to design good questions to ask, any suggestions? Thanks Jan
    I've Been in L+D for a year and a half. I have only had NVD and C-sec ; ie no emergency deliveries and no bad babies. I am comfortable with my skills for normal healthy deliveries, but am really scared about being alone on night shift and having all hell break loose. I work in a small town hospital where We also do the nursery, postpartum, pediatrics, primary c-sec(we do the actual c-sec on our own floor) recoveries, surgicals, and respite for children and geriatric. I think I would feel better if I could just focus on L+D. Our hospital does the avg. of 300 births per year. I love L+D , just need more of it. Any more questions?
  4. by   NurseforPreggers
    I have been a nurse for almost exactly one year. In this time I have:


    1. Labored and recovered countless "normal" deliveries and circulated C/S.
    2. "Caught" countless babies.
    3. Had one close up and personal experience with PP hemorrhage (was not pretty, I still hate thinking about it).
    4. Been involved in atleast 3 instances of shoulder dystocia.
    5. Precipted atleast 5 babies ( I know I know, they call me the queen, not my fault it just tends to happen to me )
    6. Had 2 patients abrupt.
    7. Had to perform PPV on atleast 2 babies (thank god NICU was available before intubation became necessary)
    8. Seen one mommy die
    9. Helped take care of 2 eclamptic pts.

    I better stop this list before I depress myself. LOL. I work on a busy unit that does approximately 300-400 deliveries per month.

    Still sounds like alot in a year. I'd be interested to hear from some other yearlings.

    Do I feel like I am competent? Yes.
    Do I feel like I've learned it all? No way Jose! Not even close!
    Last edit by NurseforPreggers on Jun 1, '05
  5. by   USA987
    Great timing...I've been off of orientation exactly 1 yr. yesterday....working full-time at a facility doing approx. 2400 deliveries a year.

    I've experienced:
    -countless NSVD's
    -2 true crash c/sections
    -1 uterine rupture (VBAC)
    -2 postpartum hemorrhages
    -1 shoulder dystocia
    -1 34 wk. IUFD
    -1 baby requiring PPV
    -1 pt. who went into 2nd degree type 2 heart block with a fentanyl bolus during an epidural (almost called a code blue)
    -1 pt. who received a high epidural (we intubated her and DID call a code blue--good thing I use to be on the code team when I worked in the ICU!!)
    -4 precipitous deliveries...but I've never had to catch one
    -1 pt. w/HELLP syndrome and several PIH patients

    I agree with the previous poster...I feel competent...but by no means have I experienced half of what's out there!

    My first year as an L&D nurse has been awesome. I truly could not have done it without the assistance and support of my peers. I am also fortunate that I work with several outstanding groups of MD's...most of them love teaching (but have little tolerance for slackers). I also attribute my success to our orientation program.
    Last edit by USA987 on Jun 1, '05
  6. by   Isabel5
    Hello....Just interested in what classes did you take and if all of yull on the board are rn nurses and how long did it take you to study and what did you study in school. I am very interested in the feild all of you are doing....Thanks if somebody replies hope non of you think am stupid...
  7. by   tryingtomakeit
    I went directly into L&D after graduating in May of 2004. I have been working exactly one year tomorrow!

    I work in a hospital that does about 700 deliveries a month and when I first started I was sooooo scared. I felt as though I had been pushed out of the "nest" much too soon. I had received minimal orientation before I found myself working the night shift alone. I still don't agree with working along in L&D, but I am much more comfortable now.

    I have had NUMEROUS precipts, abruptions, etc.. I either scrub or circulate when my inductions turn into sections. I have caught and recovered at least a million babies (just kidding) - have even bagged a few. I have held the hands of numerous mothers as they cry - knowing that the baby they are about to deliver isn't alive. I have cried both happy and sad tears with my co-workers. I have left work so tired I was barely able to walk to my car - and have still managed to smile thinking about my night.

    Am I competent? Yes, but also human. I know I still have worlds of information to learn and that my experience is still minimal at best, but I also know that I will never know EVERYTHING and I know when to ask for help. I am still growing and learning every day. Most of all I am in LOVE with what I do ... not bad, eh?

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