New to PACU -- and in panic!!!

  1. Help!
    I'm a 2 year old RN but my preceptor in PACU tells me I need more experience, or ICU experience, before going to PACU. I think this is her reverse psych in challenging me to be better but OMG. This is killing me!
    I'm doing ICU class right now. It's helping me. It doesn't cover much on post anesthesia care though.
    I am enjoying reading all of the members experiences and recommendations on post op care.
    They all are worth gold.
    For starters... how did you all start at PACU? How did you remember to get along with CVPs and PA lines without the fear of messing them up?
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  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   Tweety
    Good luck to you. Welcome!
  4. by   Nataliel_25
    To Tazski12:
    You shouldn't be worried about all of the mess of lines, airways, drains, ventilators an exct cause eventually you laugh at yourself about how's all this doable. With the practice and motivation to get in common with a challengable field you'll succeed. And yes, you will need time to figure out what's the hell is going on in here, but there are allways two options - love it or throw it. I'm a lucky one who comes with the joy to the job cause every day is different, you learn a lot and there is never bored routine, but dynamic.
    Wish you a lot of luck :Melody:
  5. by   Charity
    I had 5 years experience prior to PACU, 2 in Peds med/surg and 3 in Critical Care. Don't panic about the lines- Make sure things are labelled, waveforms visible and no blood! (not necessarily in that order) start from there. Treat the patient and remember that you are not the only nurse there.

    As for the experience comment just tell her that you are getting more experience every day. You will do fine.
  6. by   tazski12
    Thanks!
    Alright. Here's my question... or questions:
    When do you extubate?
    What are your parameters or weaning protocols?
  7. by   cowpoke_rn
    You can extubate when your patient has a gag reflex, can lift their head up and hold it for at least 5 seconds or more, they should be awake and following commands too. Make sure they have gotten their strength back before you call anesthesia to come and extubate. Don't worry, you will get the hang of it. Good luck. Feel free to ask questions on this thread.
  8. by   tazski12
    If my preceptor starts yelling at me for being slow.. in which I sure am because I am starting... what am I suppose to do? Or say?
    By the way, what's the best way to differentiate obtunded versus stupurous? or should I just avoid using those words all together?

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