Ever felt dizzy in the OR?

  1. The more I read about the OR and the more I remember back to being in the OR and observing the more I am getting excited about the possibility of working there. Some things that I think might be positives for me are that I love working with my hands..I never considered myself organized but I know how annoyed I get at work when the cart doesn't have all the supplies it should have and when everyone has just shoved everything in randomly and piled crap up inside it. I also try to clean my cart atleast once in the day because I imagine germs all over the thing as I wheel it around the floor. But anyhoo, the other thing I like on the floor is doing dressing changes or wound vacs because I love to come up to something ugly and fix it and make it look all "nice" again. (I don't like how doing all these things can put me behind on the floor though).

    I remember loving watching the surgeries and all the metal parts and such and I loved the more invasive the surgery the more interesting it was too me. But all this thinking made me remember the 2nd C-section I saw. It was immediately after the first one I saw. I am not sure what happenned or why because guts and blood don't really bother me and I think it is interesting..but something about the smell overtook the room in a rapid manner when he cut into her uterus and my heart rate went crazy and i got numb and tingly in my face and feet and I was really nervous that I would get dizzy and pass out or something. So thinking about that time and that it lasted about 10 minutes at the least, I am wondering if this means I would not be able to handle working in the OR? Has this ever happened to anyone? I saw other surgeries and even the other C-section so I am not sure why it happenned.

    (In my attempts at rationalization I decided it was some sort of primordial natural deeply ingrained bio-physical reaction to the smell of blood that may have set off some sort of internal alert in my brain).
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    About sameasalways, RN

    Joined: Sep '06; Posts: 126; Likes: 15
    RN; from US
    Specialty: 8 year(s) of experience in Med/Surg


  3. by   mrsilly
    It's normal. I've seen many surg techs, RNs, med students, and residents faint or get vertigo. Sometimes it's because the person hasn't eaten anything. Other times, no one knows. I've almost fainted myself when I first started as a surg tech. I got too hot under the OR lights and became dizzy and nauseated. Don't fret over this too much.
  4. by   sameasalways
    Thanks! BTW how on earth do you stay warm in there? When I observed all my joints got painful from the cold.. eeek.
  5. by   lepetitoiseauRN
    I'm a new grad working in the OR and thought I would freeze to death at first. But, you'll be running around quite a bit which always works up a nice sweat. My biggest problem is running around and getting sweaty, then standing still for a couple hours so I start feeling clammy. Now, that's a special feeling.

    Also, you'll just start acclimating more to the temperature. When I'm in the general rooms now, I'm mostly okay with a t-shirt under my scrub top and a scrub jacket. However, our ortho & neuro rooms I think just might be pulling air straight from the Arctic...
  6. by   sameasalways
    Good I hope so because I am always cold sometimes even up on the floor I get cold and you never sit down up there. I have missed lunches and bathroom breaks for up to 13-14 hours. Maybe I will have to find some sort of thermals to wear I don't know? I have been mostly in the ortho rooms maybe they are exceptionally cold like you say..and as an observer you just stand the whole time which is very difficult for me, like I said my joints get very very sore. Thanks!
  7. by   goats'r'us
    You'll be fine. Everyone feels a bit fainty now and then, but theres ways to avoid fainting, and if you do feel ill anyone who gets mad at you is a jerk.

    Keep well hydrated (but not *too* well hydrated, there's no surgery as slow as the one you suddenly need to pee in the middle of), and (this is the big one for me) don't stand too still. You don't have to be dancing all around the OT, but a lot of the time newies faint because theyre so nervous and dont want to put a foot wrong, so they stand real still so they don't bother anyone. shifting from one foot to the other is all you need.

    If you do feel faint, DO NOT TRY TO RIDE IT OUT!! big mistake. you'll just end up arse up on the floor, or face down in the patient. if you're scrubbed, get someone to get you a chair, get your mask loosened or off, and get a cold drink into you. Again, if the surgeon can't understand that you're stepping away because you feel faint, they're a jerk.