Jump to content

Help! Pregnant and don't know what patients to avoid

during clinicals (of course I would trade patients).. or medicines I can't handle for that matter. This is my last semester and I forgot to ask my doctor what to avoid while pregnant.. I know those with radium implants are a no.. but what else can you think of? What about those undergoing radiation or chemo? I don't rely on my teacher for much.. she doesn't seem to know either..

What about phoning the office nurse and speaking to her.

She would be able to give you specifics.

There would be nothing wrong with calling her and that would

help give you peace of mind/guidance.

Jolie, BSN

Has 34 years experience. Specializes in Maternal - Child Health.

You need to speak with your OB/CNM and get his/her input on how to safely care for patients in the clinical setting.

The Occupational Health department at your nursing school or clinical site may provide you with information as well.

Best wishes for a healthy baby!


Specializes in Level III cardiac/telemetry.

I know you're not empoyed there, but perhaps employee health could help? I work with a pregnant nurse and it seems to me like she takes MRSA and C-diff patients but not VRE. But definately get some professional advice.

Antikigirl, ASN, RN

Has 13 years experience. Specializes in Education, Acute, Med/Surg, Tele, etc.

I would certainly ask you OB/GYN and discuss this with your management on the things you can and can't do during this time so you are officially excused from it!

I have two pregnant gals at work on my floor...they avoid MRSA pts, Chemo Pts (even though that is debatable, but they don't feel comfortable, and since they aren't chemo nurses...I don't find a probelm with that). Lifting is going to be an issue so your more robust pts you will either need help or others need to do any tranfers or position changes (again according to your OB/GYN on allowed lifting weights per progress of pregancy).

Most of the gals I know that are pregant are more concerned about work related stuff than home stuff too! Don't forget to ask about limitations in the home as well. I know stay totally clear of litter boxes (do not clean them yourself!)...during certain parts I was not allowed to mop/vaccuum because I was in a franks breach situation and had to be resting (I wasn't a nurse then)...and other items to avoid in the home.

As far as meds, I know your OB/GYN will know this one...and all I remember is prostate meds are a no no to handle without gloves, certain chemo drugs, certain steroids, nitro... But hey...if you aren't sure...glove up :).

traumaRUs, MSN, APRN, CNS

Has 27 years experience. Specializes in Nephrology, Cardiology, ER, ICU.

Please ask your OB/GYN provider.

I would certainly ask you OB/GYN .....during certain parts I was not allowed to mop/vaccuum because I was in a franks breach situation and had to be resting (I wasn't a nurse then)...

Did they tell you why? Or is this a thing of the past? I only ask because my son came five weeks early (and was frank breech) and I would have begged someone to tell me not to mop or vacuum :rotfl:

OP: Best wishes!

AfloydRN, BSN, RN

Has 11 years experience. Specializes in ER/ ICU.

As ar as med go, you will not be hanging chemo. There are no iv/ po meds that you can't give. Just follow standard procedure. When I was pregnant I did not take care of pts w/ TB or shingles.

Don't do what I did....the day after I found out I was pregnant, I roomed a kid with possible measles. After walking out I stopped dead in my tracks as I realized what I had done. My tech practically shook me and said "WHAT WERE YOU THINKING???"

We were told by employee health that as long as you are up to date on vaccinations and follow infection precautions, it's only TB and Shingles you need to avoid. Staffing is difficult enough, I would take the rest and follow the precautions as usual.

JentheRN05, RN

Specializes in OB, ortho/neuro, home care, office.

I would stray away from most infectious diseases, like TB/chicken pox (and it's variants), MRSA, All chemo patients and radiation patients, VRE, and don't pass any male (specific) meds, such as the new avadart (or whatever it is to reduce prostate size). Any hormone meds. Not too sure about thyroid meds. Alot of the stuff that you would not want your kids near keep yourself away from. That would be my theory.

CoffeeRTC, BSN, RN

Has 25 years experience.

Avoiding pts with Cdiff, MRSA or VRE could be impossible for some...(I work LTC and would never be able to work). Wear gloves when dealing with questionable meds. Avoid pts with measles and shinlges that have oozing wounds. Doc said it was okay to take care of pts that go to out pt chemo and radiation. My CNAs help me avoid the lifting and moving parts. Actually....they wont let me.


Has 5 years experience. Specializes in sub acute, ALF. Currently in RN school.

Staffing is difficult enough, I would take the rest and follow the precautions as usual.

Her unborn baby, as was mine when I was pregnant a yr ago, takes priority over staffing and pts.

The God honest truth? We had a pt that was HIV positive. When I was pregnant, if there were no barrier available, I would have refused to do CPR if it meant putting my unborn child at risk. Yes, I know that HIV isn't (allegedly) transmissible through saliva, but I wouldn't take the risk. My child comes first. No one should tell her she "has" to take a pt.


Has 20 years experience.

Consider this important fact: we don't always KNOW what patients present with which diseases immediately. Sometimes, we don't know ever; other times, we don't find out until we have already "laid hands" upon them in our care of them. Taking universal precautions in the vast majority of cases WILL protect you and your unborn baby from most diseases. You can't always know, for example, who has active TB when they enter your care. I know this personally as I was exposed (found out after pt was d/c) to an active case of TB when I was pregnant. Freaked out, but turned out I was ok---never got the disease. Make no mistake: You are taking a definate risk being a hospital nurse and being pregnant. But you are also taking a risk, shopping at Walmart or going out to eat---or spending time with school-age children, for example. Diseases are everywhere, and we are at an advantage in the hospital in that we usually know what each patient has going on. In the community, not so.

However, using your common sense, universal precautions, and talking this over with your OB/Midwife should mitigate a LOT of fears for you. Discuss what diseases you absolutely need to avoid exposure to with your health care provider and do just that---avoid them. But rest assured, the majority of patients will be OK for you to care for, so try not to worry too much.

Good luck and best wishes for a healthy pregnancy and joyful birth. I hope all goes well for you.


Has 8 years experience.

Actually there is one po med that I can think of that is pretty common-and you for SURE shouldn't handle the pills-Proscar. It can directly affect the fetus according to our pharmacist. I believe they actually wrote into our pharmacy policy that pregnant nurses should avoid caring for these patients so as to avoid accidental handling-i.e. the nurse being unaware and handling the pill.


Has 20 years experience.

I really urge you to speak to your dr/midwife about this matter. It's usually a bad idea to get such guidance from an internet site for such an important issue.

Good luck.

This topic is now closed to further replies.

By using the site you agree to our Privacy, Cookies, and Terms of Service Policies.