New OR Nurse and feeling overwhelmed... - page 3

by astrn

9,423 Views | 23 Comments

I am a nurse with 6 years of peds well baby experience and have recently been hired into the OR as a circulator. I have no hospital experience before this and have only worked in an office setting. I have good days and bad days... Read More


  1. 0
    canesdukegirl, this is such a good perspective. I wish I could have gotten this advice when was orienting in the OR! There are definitely those who will intimidate, bully, or try to establish pecking order by finding fault with what you do. And just because somebody (surgeon, preceptor, manager, tech, whoever) tells you to do something one day today, doesn't mean somebody else won't scold you and tell you to do the polar opposite thing tomorrow.

    None of the individual tasks in the OR are super-hard to learn. The hard thing seems to be learning the rythm and culture of the OR you're in. If you can show you're receptive in that way (think about how quickly you call time out, reply loud and clear to others who can't turn to look at you while they speak to you, hurry up and slow down at the right morments), you can learn to fit in. And you can remind yourself that the hazing (Otis elevator? Really?) and the condescension aren't good, aren't fair, and aren't something you can really do much about. Just resolve that you won't be that person when you're the veteran working with the newbie.
  2. 0
    The OR is a tough place to work. I've been there for 5 years as a scrub tech and now I'm in school. As for the tech who is rude, some people just are, but you need to realize too that just because the tech isn't an RN doesn't mean she doesn't have a wealth of knowledge for you to learn from. For Kooky Korky to say that she is probably jealous because she isn't an RN is absurd and quite frankly, a little insulting. We are patient advocates just like the nurse is. She has every right to say something if you miss a spot prepping or contaminate something. Don't take it personally. If you let everything hurt your feelings you will never make it in the OR.
  3. 0
    I am also new to the OR and am also experiencing similar hazing and the unfortunate expected OR culture behavior. I knew going into this, that the OR would require me to have a thick skin, expect that not everyone is going to like you, and that it would be a completely different working environment than bedside nursing. However, I just feel that some people really take some kind of sick pleasure in watching you struggle and leading you astray purposly just to humiliate you. I just don't get why, never have I experiecned this kind of behavior - is it that they have such low self esteem that the only way to feel any satisfaction in life is to belittle and have some control over an inexperienced person? "Nurses eat their young" is at a whole new level in the OR....It's just been difficult when I come to work eager to learn, ask questions, and have a positive attitude that it is met with such hostility at times. It's been very hard to get used to as I am a people pleaser and love to help the team get the job done.
    As a new OR nurse, I feel that when I step back to absorb what is going on or when I don't know how to best help the situation, it is seen as my being disinterested and slacking off. It's not the case though, I just lack the experience to know what to do in certain situations....Sometimes I feel like you're expected to know things that you have never seen before and be able to do it flawlessly. It's a hard working environment but I am not giving up.
    I have tried to surround myself with the people in the OR who are supportive, understand that the transition is a steep learning curve, but these people are a select bunch. These are the days where I really feel my anxiety lessen, my preformance is improved and my confidence builds. God bless these nurses.
    For the hazing nurses, yes, I understand that it takes a lot of time and patience to help new OR nurses become efficient and an asset to the OR, but it still does not give the right to create a toxic working environment. Instead of the hazing why not help me so that I can be helpful faster!
  4. 0
    Every time I read these types of posts, it makes me sad. I think nursing and healthcare attracts some of the "weirdest" people, who don't have a single caring bone in their body. It should be a nurturing environment for EVERYBODY, and that includes patients, peers, students, and anyone else we encounter in the OR. Toxic OR environments are hard to break, and it requires management that is strong enough to lay down the law. It should never be tolerated, never.


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