Quote from procrastinator911
But hate that I'm not doing or using my "nursing skills". Nurses I have worked with have lost some of their knowledge. Some don't know what an AfB culture is for.
Ouch. Maybe some nursing skills aren't used in the OR, but I definitely use my therapeutic communication skills, my patient assessment skills, and many other nursing skills in the OR. Just like any other specialty, OR nursing has a skill set specific to itself while also using only a portion of the nursing skills learned about in nursing school. It's sad when even those within our own ranks debase OR nursing as a specialty by making it out to be less than one through "skills". BTW, skills are nothing more than the performance of a task. Anyone can take a pulse; it's what one understands about the result that involves the critical thinking. If one does not have the ability to think critically, one quite frankly does not belong in the OR, where patients are extremely vulnerable and relying on the team caring for them to be their advocate.
OP, although I began my OR nursing journey, ahem, many years ago, I have changed specialties within the last few years. My recommendations are to keep a notebook for your own personal reference. My notebook included little details such as this surgeon sits for this procedure or that surgeon likes this particular instrument on every procedure. Also, if you know ahead of time what cases you will be doing the next day, try to get your hands on preference cards. Just like school, learning doesn't just occur during set hours; studying at home will be necessary.