Interested in OR for the future

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    Hello! Im a new grad nurse who started working on a med surg floor this July. While I know my time on the floor will expose me to so many different things I don't think I could handle the stress for years...I want to get my M/S experience and then find a specialty. I am considering OR as something that may be a good fit for me in the future...before anyone yells at me I know the OR is very stressful as well...not saying I would go there because it's easier than M/S but I feel that it could be an environment that suits me well. I am a very detail oriented, thorough, safety conscious person. I love anatomy...I found that class to be one of the most interesting in my 4 years in college. I like to put all of my focus and energy into what I am doing and I feel that with the OR with one case at a time I can really do everything I need to do correctly and safely for the patient. I am new to nursing and I've found out that med surg can be alot thrown at you in a short period. I feel that sometimes I am stretching myself too thin and forget to do the little things that I want to do for my patients..or that I forgot to chart something, etc. etc. I feel that with the focus needed in the OR I could really be a beneficial team member as I know my brain will not be trying to balance 5 pts' issues but rather one pt. who needs much attention and care while on the table.

    There was a new grad periop program at the hosp I am working at but timing, etc. wasnt right and I might not have been seriously considering it at the time. I think around a year from now it would be nice to be starting in the OR and even nicer if I got a position where I orient to preop, OR, PACU as the periop program does.. that way I can get a great mix of everything, never get bored, still have some pt. interaction, and not always try to juggle so so much as on a floor. I guess my question is more for anyone who went from the floor to the OR..do you enjoy it? are my interests that I stated above relevant to being fit for the OR? I will probably try to shadow just to see what it is like down the road if I decide to try to get in the OR...I know you really either love it or hate it and I would make sure it's a good fit...just something I'm considering...thanks in advance to any OR nurses for their opinions.
    bg6RN and leilo0 like this.
  2. 6 Comments so far...

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    My first job out of RN school was in med surg and I lasted about 2 months. It was hell! I cried almost every day. I wanted to be an OR nurse from the very beginning so I was happy to finally land a job as a OR nurse soon after the med surg position. It's been almost 3 years and I LOVE it. It was everything I'd hope it would be and more!

    As far as the stress is concerned it really depends on the person. I know some floor nurses that tried switching to the OR but after a few weeks in the OR orientation they couldn't handle the stress of the OR and went back to the floor. I think the floor is more stressful than the OR. So it depends who you ask. People thrive in different situations. Everyone has a different perspective. You are just starting out and you have a long career ahead of you. Try med/surg- you may love it. You may not. The great thing about nursing is you can always change specialties. The important things is getting experience- and med/surg will open many doors for you. The characteristics you've described are perfect for the OR. Sounds like you'd be a good fit!
    leilo0, LovedRN, and ButtonNose like this.
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    Thanks for replying! comforting to know someone out there has felt the same things about MS! lol ultimately if I could hold out til the one year mark on the MS floor thatd be great but we'll see. glad to hear you love the OR, I have a good feeling about it and hopefully when the time is right I can land a position there. thanks again.
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    hey katygw, I am a new grad nurse currently worked in an acute care hospital with the float pool. I find that the med-surg floors are extremely stressful too and I find myself relating to you 100% in that I am very detail oriented and like to focus on one thing at a time instead of many. I believe that being an OR nurse would suit be better than being a bedside nurse and I am trying to make my way slowly over to that area. I will be signing up for an peri-operative RN course this coming summer.
    Can you update us on your situation? Have you transitioned to being an OR nurse or are you sticking it out in med-surg? Thanks!
  6. 0
    Hi ButtonNose!
    since I posted this original thread many things have changed! I just got an offer to work in an allergy office and I am taking it not only to "escape" the floor but also because I think Ill actually be happy there! lol I think I will do well in a lower stress environment such as an office and I like the idea that I can help people but have them go on their merry way afterwards! I like that ill be able to focus on what Im doing with one person at a time and not 5 highly acute patients. I would still consider the outpatient OR setting in the future but after this experience I know I will not want to work in a hospital ever again. Glad I got the experience and learned alot but am GLAD that I'm leaving..just have 4 more shifts on the floor. But sounds like we have the same feelings...my advice is to just start applying to other places! I have 7 months med surg experience now so I would try to stick it out to at least 6 months if you havent already as it looks stronger on your resume.. let me know if you hear from anyone and if your going to pursue the OR. Good luck!
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    Hey katygw!

    So Sorry for not responding... when you wrote your last posting I typed up a nice response, hit the enter button and then it never submitted! I was so angry I just left it for a while hehe.

    So right now you are most likely working at the allergy office; how do you like it? I'm glad you found something that fit your interests and can maintain your sanity :P

    I am currently still on med-surg floors; however I am also in my 2nd month of my perioperative course! I really like it so far but keep in mind I have not had a clinical placement yet... I am somewhat anxious about starting that because there seem to be very strong personalities in the OR. I for one am quite timid and like to stay low key so I hope I do no clash with other RNs and surgeons... having said that I am not a push over and will stand my ground and speak up when needed! I'm hoping to possibly find a FT OR position so I can leave the floor... I had my first encounter with an older RN bully the other day and I couldn't believe it. Anyway that's another story!

    Hope to hear back from you!
  8. 0
    Hi katygw
    I could have written your post about why you love the OR.
    I've been in a medical floor for four months now and while most days are great, I still can't shake the feeling of wanting to run away from floor nursing, screaming. I have an interview for an OR position on Monday and I'm hoping I get it. Here's to us making our dreams of becoming an OR nurse a reality.
    Last edit by leilo0 on Jun 16, '12 : Reason: edited info


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