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Lung Sounds!!

First Year   (922 Views | 5 Replies)
by FabRN FabRN (New) New Nurse

222 Profile Views; 4 Posts

Hi everyone!

I got my license June 2020! And recently started working as a RN in a pediatric clinic doing triage, I love it but it can be stressful, mostly because I have trouble differentiating lung sounds! It’s driving me crazy and kids are not easy to listen to with crying, coughing, etc. I feel so dumb! I think I am good with everything else, my history taking, and the rest of my physical assessment but lung sounds are so tricky to me. I’ve been researching online and watching videos but I’m not sure what else I can do, I feel like a terrible nurse!!

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Nurse SMS has 9 years experience as a MSN, RN and specializes in Critical Care; Cardiac; Professional Development.

7 Followers; 6,358 Posts; 49,541 Profile Views

Deep breath and dial it back a bit here. A terrible nurse? That's just insecurity talking. Don't let those kinds of anxious thoughts take root. You don't look at a toddler learning to walk and tell it that its terrible at walking each time it falls on its rump. You recognize the learning process and the need for encouragement and you celebrate its victories.

You are a new grad. Of course you are still learning lung sounds. Find out what other nurses are doing to help kiddos be calm and cooperative when doing the assessment. You may have to make things into a game, you may want to let them listen to yours first or their parent's or a teddy bear's. Seek the advice of the more senior nurses in your clinic and even ask them to listen and tell you what they hear. It will come with time and you MUST give yourself that time. If you don't you will crash and burn. You aren't going to be good at this. Not for a while still. Accept it and be determined to learn.

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jc3015 has 12 years experience and specializes in RN. Med/Surg.

54 Posts; 1,980 Profile Views

Relax. I don’t know how long I kept referring back to a cheat sheet just to be sure I documented the right lung sound. I wound up having to get a much better stethoscope because I had so much trouble hearing sounds in very overweight or obese patients.

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4 Posts; 222 Profile Views

Thank you both for the encouragement! I am definitely being hard on myself, I will be taking your advice and continue working on improving my skills. Thank you again!

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jc3015 has 12 years experience and specializes in RN. Med/Surg.

54 Posts; 1,980 Profile Views

I recall, during an RN clinical, asking asking an RN how long it took her to feel comfortable coming onto her shift. She replied, “any day now”. Honestly, I worked SNF as an LPN for a couple years before getting a hospital job as an RN. By that point, I was fairly comfortable during that orientation.

However, there’s always going to be one of those days. Buck up.

Edited by jc3015

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4 Posts; 222 Profile Views

Thank you! 🙂

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