New to the operating room! - page 2

Hello! I have accepted an internship in the OR. I am so excited. I graduated May 2012 and have been working as a RN for 8 months. I start in June and cannot wait. I am so ready for this learning... Read More

  1. by   canesdukegirl
    Quote from Ilovethe80s
    I took pictures of how the equipment was set up (ie: beach chair). Ask as many questions as you need to understand what's going on. Also, when the sched for the next day came out I would find out which room i was going to be in and make copies of the dr's pref card and review them so I was prepared in the morning to just hit the ground running. Also, be mindful of your scrub techs. They can be your best ally or worst enemy. I prefer for them to be my ally! I respect what they do and really try to help them as much as I can and I've learned that through doing this they help me and we respect each other. You really will learn a lot from the techs bc they are right up there w/ the surgeons. I love my scrub techs and I'm so grateful that many of them are very dedicated, intelligent and hard working.
    VERY NICE, 80s! I have yet to see a nurse resident/new hire take pics of the equipment. That's got to be extremely helpful to you.

    I am so impressed with your drive to learn! Recently, I did a lecture for new nurse residents on how to prepare for life in the OR. I suggested that the residents get their assignments the day prior, and review the procedure, as well as the pref cards.

    You seem very organized and focused. You will do well, dear one!
  2. by   canesdukegirl
    Dear B2C,

    Some tips:

    1. Set your alarm to get up 30 minutes earlier than you normally would. If you can't function without coffee, set your delay brew accordingly. When you get out of the shower, grab your mug of coffee and your notes. Sit down and review your notes. Write out any questions that you have.

    2. Have a high protein breakfast. My favorite is boiled eggs. I make them the night before, shell them, sprinkle salt and pepper in a ziploc bag and toss them in the bag so all I have to do is open the fridge in the morning and grab the bag on my way out the door. I nosh on them while driving to work. It also helps to have a jar of peanut butter in your locker so that you can have a tablespoon between cases. It really does stave off hunger.

    3. Get yourself a small notebook-small enough to fit into the back pocket of your scrubs. Divide the notebook into sections that represent each service you will be rotating through. Then divide each section into subsections for each surgeon. I bought stick-on file tabs in different colors for each section, and then bought little tags for each subsection with the surgeon's name written on it. Write down everything you learned in the case. For example:

    Section 1: General Surgery
    Tab: Dr. Anderson
    Lap Chole
    Major basket, camera, 10/30 scope, 5/30 scope, endoclip appliers, endoshears
    One Hassan trocar, three 5mm trocars, endocatch bag, three green endoclip cartridges, specimen cup, 0 Vicryl on a UR-6 needle, two 4-0 Monocryl to close.

    Additional notes: Position supine, no pillow under knees. No foley. Pad heels. Likes music, but not too loud; prefers old skool rap. Prep with Chloraprep. Prefers cloth towels to drape out. Don't ask questions during clipping. Likes to close to energetic music, can ask questions. Have three clips loaded, and make sure the endoshears are Likes an 11 blade to open, followed by the Hassan trocar. Prepare each 5mm sleeve with the trocar. Have 10 mls Lido loaded up prior to each incision. Does not use Fluoro.

    4. Ask your preceptor questions. That's why they are there. Even if you think they are dumb questions...ask!

    5. Be easy on yourself. It takes a long time to learn the ins and outs of the OR.

    6. Above all, keep a positive outlook.

    Good luck to you, and keep coming back to this site if you have questions.

  3. by   Anniehow
    As I have recently posted in another thread I have recently accepted a long wanted OR positions and was wondering the same thing. Thanks for all the great suggestions!!
  4. by   born2circulateRN
    @Canes, thanks so much! I really appreciate the detailed preference card, definitely gives me a better idea. And I'll definitely come back if I have more questions.

    Thanks again for the great advice everyone!

    @Anniehow, Congrats again! When are you starting?
  5. by   Anniehow
    I start June 24th! @Born2CirculateRn Check your inbox, I just sent you a PM
  6. by   michele742
    I am also a brand new RN...just passed my boards last week and was hired for an OR periop program. I'm very excited But, I must admit, I have absolutely no idea what language you all are speaking in...other than supine and that's why I'm going through the periop program, right? (good grief I hope they don't expect me to know these terms right off the bat!) To the OP, congrats on your new position!!! YAY!!
  7. by   born2circulateRN
    Quote from michele742
    I am also a brand new RN...just passed my boards last week and was hired for an OR periop program. I'm very excited But, I must admit, I have absolutely no idea what language you all are speaking in...other than supine and that's why I'm going through the periop program, right? (good grief I hope they don't expect me to know these terms right off the bat!) To the OP, congrats on your new position!!! YAY!!
    That's awesome! Congrats on passing boards and becoming an OR RN as your 1st nursing job! And yeah, I'm pretty much as clueless as you are. But I am sure we are definitely not alone. A new journey now begins, yay!
  8. by   alodocios
    Hi, everyone, i too am a new RN and just completed my first week in the periop residency program. I am so excited and nervous. If i could just learn my way around the OR floor so many wings and rooms. We are using periop 101 modules also. The detailed preference card was great, thanks. Our preference cards are typed up and put on a ring, but as i found some things, like the music are not on there but priceless to know! When to ask questions and when to shut up is another big one! We will be with the same scrub preceptor and the same circulating preceptor for the whole program, I love that. We will also practice in class which is nice. I feel so overwhelmed yet excited. One of the scrub techs just got her RN and is in our class, she knows soooooooooooo much. I have so much respect for that position, i hope i get to scrub often and would like to become a first assistant if i can. But for now i will focus on learning all of the many things there are to learn to be an OR nurse.

    Any advice on learning instruments, sponges etc.....?
  9. by   shanshanRN
    I have been an RN for 3 years but my area has been sub acute and I became a Unit Manager there...however, I have always wanted to work in the Or setting...I recently was hired in the trauma hospital where I did my clinicals and I start in early July...I too, am very nervous about the transition. I am a very organized person and prioritize well, I I am nervous about the learning process and some things I have read on here say that the nurses in the OR "eat their young"...I want to love my job and not be intimidated bc it's already very hard to leave your comfort zone and come into "someone else's house"...I have read the tips that Canes wrote and they are great...any tips on how to transition smoothly?
  10. by   Woopsadaisy
    how is it going, Shanshan? This is what I want to know too.

    we are to be commended for leaving our comfort zone and stepping up to fulfill an ambition!
    And I am being eaten alive-- don't know about you, but the nurses where I work are not digging having me there. I feel like an outsider.
    I told one of them to "shut up and let me work" the other day because he would #1 tell me to prep the patient and then as I am prepping #2 would start telling me how next I would need to do blank blank and blank. Not sure that was cool of me to tell him to shut up, I should probably make sure I didn't hurt his feelings? at any rate-- it was clear, concise, and closed-loop communication.
    I just couldn't take not standing up for myself any more, at the time, I had to say something.

    Anyway, he told my supervisor about it. She was kinda laughing when she told me that he had told her that I said to him to shut up. Different personalities cannot train. I have become someone who needs a certain type of preceptor.

    ... anyway, I am not transitioning smoothly. But I think that I actually am transitioning. Hope that you are.

    So far, no on has asked me to find any Otis elevators or the Eustacian Tubes. Or told me to catch something while I have my sterile gloves on. I guess that makes me lucky.

  11. by   shanshanRN

    Love the name...I must say that I started officially in the actual OR in mid August...I had a periop course and exam to take first. I met 5 girls that started with me, thankfully. We are doing it together and I love it. It is not at all what I thought it was gonna be...yeah, u get ur difficult personalities, but I def love it. I have transitioned and now I am on my way to becoming an efficient OR nurse. I hope urs is going well too....No Otis elevators for me...LOL
  12. by   tbehlow
    I have been a scrub tech for many years. Went back to school to receive my LPN , worked on med surg floor for 6 months , hateed it , now I'm back in the OR where I belong... Anyone new to the OR, take it one case at a time , one day at a time and give your self time to learn,.
  13. by   Graduation2016