Old School OR stories?

  1. I'm stealing the idea for this thread from the General Nursing Discussion. They had a neat one about all the old school techniques and practices. I talked to an older nurse at work, and she said they use to reuse gloves!? Is this true? Any "seasoned" OR nurses that can tell us how they used to do things back in the day? I love hearing about stuff like that...
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    About ortess1971

    Joined: Oct '05; Posts: 536; Likes: 24
    Specialty: OR


  3. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    They used to rewash, repowder, and resterilize gloves.

    Glass syringes used. The hypos were washed, resharpened, and resterilized.

    Scalpels had a permanent blade that would be resharpened as needed.

    The abdominal suction was metal with a detachable tip, that resembled the Yankeur plastic suction.

    Bovie? More like lots of ooze and Clamp-Tie City.
  4. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    Also, lap sponges were washed and bleached, folded, packaged and resterilized.
  5. by   BSNtobe2009
    For years it was believed that blood was sterile if it came directly from inside the body...it was not an uncommon practice to give someone a shot, and then take your finger to wipe up a stray drop and then just wash your hands.
  6. by   MissJoRN
    I remember some, heard some stories...

    We still have those glass syringes lying around. They were a real PITA since some barrels fit better with some plungers regardless of size. (Ever get the drawers of a handmade antique dresser mixed up?)

    I remember counting those suctions as two parts

    Always an incision and suturing for cataracts. Always a retrobulbar block.

    No endoscopy

    Gowns and drapes were washed and reused and blood could soak through. Nurses made their own gauze masks- I have a pattern here somewhere.

    Circulator AKA "dirty nurse" (OK that still happens sometimes, LOL)

    Aways threading suture onto free needles.

    Wire suture- come packed in bunches of 6 in a long envelope- always trying to keep 2 loaded and constantly trading back and forth with surgeon- needle holder on needle, hemo on free end, hand in an arch... and count instruments on your back table as you do it, too!

    Leaving abdomens distended with fluid in hopes on minimizing adhesions.

    2 mayos, etc, for open bowels.

    Pts usually vomiting as they emerged in the OR and/or in PACU. (Oh how we take Decadron, Zofran, and better gases for granted!)

    Prying (and praying) blades off handles with a kocher.