I accepted an OR RN internship position

  1. I am graduating on May 14 and have been interviewing for nursing jobs. I interviewed with medicine and surgical units and perioperative services. I have been a Patient Care Tech on med/surg floors so I have a good idea about nursing on those floors and have decided it is not for me - I have cleaned up enough C Diff poop to last a lifetime! I really enjoyed my clinical rotation in the OR and did an 8 hour job shadow following a patient from pre-op, to the OR and into PACU. I like the focus on one patient, working as a team for one patient, and the techinal aspects that OR nursing provides. The hospital I work at has a 6 month OR RN internship program that I interviewed for and I was offered the position. I am thrilled. I do find it interesting that when my friends who are floor or ICU nurses or my classmates who are going to med/surg, ICU or ED areas react to my going into the OR as an area of nursing that is not as "respectable" or "real nursing" like med/surg, ICU or ED. Is this a common reaction or belief among non-OR nurses? How do you deal with the condescending remarks? I am excited about this career choice - I don't want anyone to bring me down!
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  2. 10 Comments

  3. by   suzanne4
    Just remember that you will always be wearing the scrubs when the other units aren't allowed to......................I think that they are just jealous....
    You will be always learning in the OR, no two patients are exactly alike, no two days are exactly the same. Living over here in Thailand now, the one place that I truly miss is the OR, and again not knowing what is going to come in next, especially if you are on trauma call.

    Good luck to you.................
  4. by   orrnlori
    Your "friends" actually said the job was not respectable? Wow, these are also brand new nurses as well? Wow. Wow. I can't believe that. I've never ever heard that in the 5 years I've been in the OR. Wow.
  5. by   christySN
    Maybe I should not have put respectable in quotes - that is my interpretation based on responses to my choosing the OR. What they say is that they would be bored, or wouldn't like not having patient contact, or being the docs go-fer. So I get the sense that some nurses think that OR nursing is not as challenging or fulfilling. I have heard student nurses say that they would be afraid they would not get a chance to do what we learned in school - that it doesn't seem like real nursing. I know it is different than floor nursing and that is why I am interested in it. I am looking forward to being an OR nurse and I was just surprised by some reactions. Have you ever experienced this?
  6. by   suzanne4
    Actually never. You use more of your skills in the OR than you do in many other areas. In my former OR days, I could be in a room with an aneurysm clipping all day, then take my afternoon break of about ten minutes, and go and finish a heart that was just getting ready to come off of pump. That is the time when you can get increased arrythmias, etc..............depending on whether your facility does kids, that opens up more areas. As I said before, no two days are ever the same.

    The ER gets the trauma, then sends them to you. As much as was going on in the ER, more can be going on in the OR, and usually is. Remember that there are no longer many nurses and ancillary staff to help, just you and perhaps another nurse to help you. So you will actually may much busier and really "need to know your stuff."

    I am sure that ORRNLORI will agree with me.................your friends just aren't aware.......................
  7. by   orrnlori
    I guess I was speechless when I read your post last night. All I could think of was "wow".

    OR nursing is soooooo different from any other kind I can think of. It's highly skilled and highly technical.

    A good OR nurse will be requested by the surgeons because of their skills and aptitudes. A good OR nurse stands alone to advocate for their helpless patient sometimes against surgeons, nose to nose. A good OR nurse has to know a little about everything and lots about a huge spectrum of illnesses and injuries, plus all things in between. A good OR nurse knows how to run million dollar equipment and trouble shoot it when it won't. A good OR nurse can scrub most anything and knows what the surgeon wants before he asks for it. A good OR nurse trains the future surgeons of tomorrow and keeps them out of trouble with their attendings. A good OR nurse comforts the fears of her patient's and holds their hand while they go to sleep and when they wake up. A good OR nurse knows a gamut of lab values and what they mean. A good OR nurse helps to save the lives of hundreds of trauma patients in her career. A good OR nurse can think on her feet, can pull equipment and instruments out of thin air, as well as pull a few miracles out of thin air a couple of times, at least once a week. A good OR nurse manages what is many times unmanagable, staff shortages, equipment failures, lost instrumentation, all without a hitch or hiccup. A good OR nurse puts the clinical staff and surgeons at ease through the trust they have developed with her/him.

    Never be made to feel ashamed for your choice. When your friends are fried to a crisp from handling too many patients, too many services, and working too many nights, you will have the satisfaction that you've made the right decision. You are about to become one of the highest trained specialty nurses there is. Good luck and have fun with it. Don't worry about your friends perceptions. Your friends are wrong.
    Last edit by orrnlori on May 1, '04
  8. by   suzanne4
    Quote from orrnlori
    I guess I was speechless when I read you post last night. All I could think of was "wow".

    OR nursing is soooooo different from any other kind I can think of. It's highly skilled and highly technical.

    A good OR nurse will be requested by the surgeons because of their skills and aptitudes. A good OR nurse stands alone to advocate for their helpless patient sometimes against surgeons, nose to nose. A good OR nurse has to know a little about everything and lots about a huge spectrum of illnesses and injuries, plus all things in between. A good OR nurse knows how to run million dollar equipment and trouble shoot it when it won't. A good OR nurse can scrub most anything and knows what the surgeon wants before he asks for it. A good OR nurse trains the future surgeons of tomorrow and keeps them out of trouble with their attendings. A good OR nurse comforts the fears of her patient's and holds their hand while they go to sleep and when they wake up. A good OR nurse knows a gamut of lab values and what they mean. A good OR nurse helps to save the lives of hundreds of trauma patients in her career. A good OR nurse can think on her feet, can pull equipment and instruments out of thin air as well as pull a few miracles out of thin air a couple of times as well, at least once a week. A good OR nurse manages what is many times unmanagable, staff shortages, equipment failures, lost instrumentation, all without a hitch or hiccup. A good OR nurse puts the clinical staff and surgeons at ease through the trust they have developed with her/him.

    Never be made to feel ashamed for your choice. When your friends are fried to a crisp from handling too many patients, too many services, and working too many nights, you will have the satisfaction that you've made the right decision. You are about to become one of the highest trained specialty nurses there is. Good luck and have fun with it. Don't worry about your friends perceptions. Your friends are wrong.
    You summed it up perfectly. I wouldn't trade my OR skills for anything. No matter what area I have worked in, the OR skills are always a blessing. something that you never forget.....................
  9. by   christySN
    Thank you for your words of encouragement. I look forward to becoming an OR nurse. It is hard trying to determine what area of nursing will be the best fit for my personality and skills but I believe it is the OR. So after graduation on May 14 and passing the NCLEX this summer, I anticipate beginning my career in the OR. If there are any other new grads out there that are choosing the OR it would be great to get your thoughts and opinions!
  10. by   shudokan-RN
    I read Lori's post, and I agree with every thing she said. Be thankful that you got a position in the OR. It is in my opinion the Best place to be. I feel that I contribute each and every day. I may not have meaningful conversations with my patient. :zzzzz But I am their advocate !! I too old hands when they go to sleep, tell them to pick a good dream, and tell them I will be there when they wake up. The OR schedule is great , no weekends or holidays (except call)
    and then its time and 1/2 or double time. gotta love those benjamins$$$
    Good Luck, and if you have questions, you can PM me, or visit the OR RN site on allnurses
    Welcome to My World

    :hatparty: Marci
  11. by   Rnn2003
    Orrnlori, you hit the nail dead on the head with the hammer I could not have said that any better myself about Operating Room Nurses
  12. by   RNKITTY04
    Christy,
    If I were you (and I hope to be in about 3 months) I would be doing cartwheels! But yep your friends were right about a couple of things, you won't have the "wonderful "experience of non-stop call bells, family members screaming in your face because "Moms jello is the wrong color, housekeeping flipping you off cause you (gasp) asked them to clean a room. No more scraping feces out of the bedside comode, or Granpa asking me to powder his.... (insert male organs here)
    I sure am sorry I will soon be leaving that all behind, sniff sniff, maybe your friends will invite you over once in a while so you can sit back and laugh to yourself about how very very lucky you are.
    Congrats and eat it up with a spoon.!!!!

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