OR Student Experience - page 2

Hi everyone. I am so excited. Our school provides us with a 3 day OR experience. Tomorrow I am going to be shadowing a Circulating Nurse during a Colostomy takedown. Not sure what Friday holds... Read More

  1. by   nursetee627
  2. by   ageless
    I went into the OR right out of school and never regretted it. Stayed with it for years and then went into a critical care area. Never felt like I missed a beat or lost any nursing skills while in the OR. We can't over generalize situations or people. Many will say that going into the OR first is wrong, but follow your heart and your own instincts. Best wishes to you.
  3. by   Shannonrw
    While I was in nursing school I was a secretary for a med surg floor and decided that the staffing issue alone on the floors was dangerous why take care of 7 to 10 patients when you can take care of just one. I think that floor nurses are very hard workers but it was not for me. I did not want to be that liable.
    I went right into an OR nurse internship program and never looked back. YOU DO NOT NEED FLOOR EXPERIENCE TO BECOME AN OR NURSE!!!
    The only reason to be on the floor is to make sure that is not where you want to be.
  4. by   RockieSis
    Before going to the OR I worked 4 years in the ER. The ER just happened to be avaliable at graduation time as the OR required 2 years of experience. The ER experience prepared me for most any event that can happen, it also helped me learn how to deal with demanding docs. I knew upon graduation that I wanted to work in the OR, hearts if possible as I had observed a cabg at a competing hospital. Well, when my hospital started talking about puting in a new heart program I quickly put in for a transfer to the OR. That was over a year ago and things are going great in the OR and I now wonder why I waited so long.
    Re: the depate about losing skills, It's really two totally different kinds of nursing. If you feel certain that the OR is your niche, then don't worry about it. You can always go back and work at & learn med surg nursing. The only real advantage I have been able to determine is that given the current shortage of staff, our hospital is paying double time for any nurse willing to work an extra shift on the floor or in the unit, er, etc. Without some experience on the floor you may feel uncomfortable working in a different environemnt. The more versatile (sp) you are the greater your opportunities. Get comfortable where you are and then cross train with another department. Trust me, If you offer to help them with their work, they will be more than happy to share their knowledge of patient care and assessment with you.
    Good Luck, Nursing is a wonderful career and remember its all about attitude.
  5. by   stevierae
    Dear Anne--(KC Chick)

    I liked your dog quotes!!

    Her's another dog quote some elderly lady told me: "Dog" is "God" spelled backwards."

    She said that dogs were special messengers of God, maybe even angels. It never occurred to me before!

    She might be right. Our dog, (now deceased) literally saved us from a house fire over 20 years ago. He whined and whined at our bed when our children were babies one night when we were trying to sleep. We kept telling him to go away and go to sleep. He would NOT let up.

    Finally we got up and went downstairs with him--the living room and hall were FILLED with smoke from the fireplace; it had somehow backed up into the rooms.

    We had thought the fireplace fire had been extinguished before we went to bed. This was back in the days before smoke alarms.

    He saved our lives then, and, while our children were growing up, he never let them out of his sight.

    Dogs really are very special .

    The gift which I am sending you is called a dog and is in fact the most valuable possession of mankind."
    Theodore Gaza

    "There is an Indian legend which says when a human dies there is a bridge they must cross to enter into heaven. At the head of that bridge waits every animal that human encountered during their lifetime. The animals, based upon what they know of this person, decide which humans may cross the bridge.... and which are turned away....." Anonymous
    Last edit by stevierae on Jul 22, '02
  6. by   jude11142
    Originally posted by stevierae
    Dear RN2be--

    DO INSIST that they let you learn how to scrub, and scrub all areas, not just get stuck in one.
    I was a corpsman in several areas before I went to OR tech school in the Navy, then went to nursing school and went straight back to the OR in 1981. Med surg in the Navy and in nursing school was enough, thank you very much.
    But anyway--when I went back to the OR as a nurse, we were an almost all RN staff, and we could all fulfill both roles, and very well. If you did not know how to scrub a case, you spoke up, and backscrubbed with someone until you were proficient. This was a trauma hospital and you could NOT take call until you were proficient in all areas, both scrubbing and circulating.
    These days, I see a trend toward charge nurses who are in charge of ENTIRE SPECIALTIES, yet have never scrubbed a case in that specialty, or in ANY area, for that matter--AND THEY HAVE NO INTENTION OF LEARNING TO DO SO. I have always felt that, unless you scrub yourself, you will not be able to anticipate the needs of your scrub. The circulator should be the most experienced person in the room, in both areas.
    If you confine yourself to circulating ONLY, this is what happens:
    You won't be able to help out a new scrub, or registry scrub, who is unfamiliar with the instrument trays in your O.R.
    You will be clueless as to his or her need for a break, although you will make sure that someone gives YOU one.
    If an instrument is missing, you will not be able to suggest something else that would do in a pinch.
    Another bad trend: nurses who confine themselves to ONE SPECIALTY, and never learn anything else, so they panic when they get an emergency or another type of case in their room. Then everybody has to play "musical chairs" that is, rearrange their room assignments, to accomodate them. Don't let them stick you into, say, "eyes" or "urology," then wake up one day, 3 years down the road, and realize you've never done a crani or an orthopedic case.
    Good luck to you!
    I have been reading your posts and I totally agree with you. I was an OR Tech for over 10yrs, and scrubbed on all services. My last two yrs were working 11pm-7am, so we got emergencies/trauma, my loves,lol........I worked with many nurses who never scrubbed and really believe that they were missing out on so much. I am an LPN now going for RN and miss my o.r. days, miss that adrenalin rush of the ER calling and saying "gunshot to abd on way up" etc.........Will I go ever go back to it? Maybe, ya know they say that once you're in the O.R. ya never leave or you always come back to it. I worked in the early 80's, through the AIDS epidemic/heart/liver transplants and so on. I think that all nurses should rotate through the OR and scrub. I guess I have several views though, as I also worked in one-day ambulatory center and they only hired RN's. No techs at all. Is that necessary? I can't see spending all the money on 2 rns. As a nurse, I stil feel that way. I think that their is a place for both. What I don't agree with is having so many techs on the floors doing nursing care. Just don't think that they have the experience, but that's a whole other story. Anyways, any nurses lucky enough to rotate through surgery, push them to let you scrub. It's quite an experience, one that nobody can imagine unless they do it. Oh stevierae, you sure got me itching, lol..........maybe I'm not tooooooooo old afterall to go back?? LOL,

  7. by   KC CHICK
    stevierae, I'm so glad to hear your story. Thanks for sharing. It's incredible what animals are capable of. When I was a single gal living on my own, I depended on my cat to let me know if she heard any "strange" noises. My hubby and I now have a 3 month old Vizsla pup. I hope we develop as strong of a bond as you and your dog apparantly did.

    Back to the subject at hand......
    I recently transferred from the OR at my hospital to the medical/telemetry unit. It is a stepping stone to ICU for experience that will one day get me accepted into anesthesia school. (fingers crossed!!!) As far as the issue about med/surg prepping one for surgery....I can tell you that I've experienced the opposite effect. The OR has prepared me for the med/surg floor. In the past year of surgical experience, I have gotten to know what exactly happens behind those closed doors. I have also become acquainted with the surgeons.....working on a one on one basis....in the OR for hours at a time. I can now also explain to a pre-surgical patient almost exactly what is going to happen to them when they get to the OR for their procedure. I also know what kind of surgical wound to look for in a post-surgical patient....and what kind of dressing or drains a particular surgeon may have used. I can also do a pre-surgical prep with ease.....it's second nature to me now.

    The OR experience is a GREAT asset. You wouldn't believe the difference between what goes on in the OR and what the floor nurses think goes on in the OR. Some don't have a clue what happens during surgery. I CAN TELL THEM!
    Also, a few days ago, one of our medical docs decided she wanted to place a chest tube in one of our floor patients. I went in to watch with the other orientees.......and ended up putting on sterile gloves myself to assist her w/the procedure. The floor nurses in the room couldn't do it.....cause they rarely place chest tubes on our floor. I have the experience in placing a blade on a knife handle and taking care of sharps afterward...even taking the instruments to CS for processing. I also noticed that some of the orientees didn't really have the 'sterile/surgical conscience' that you develop in the OR. "Don't walk between me and my sterile field please."

    Also, if I hadn't gone to the OR straight out of school....I may never have gotten the intense interest in anesthesia that I now have. One road may definately lead to another. That's the great thing about nursing....the possibilities are endless.

    Last edit by KC CHICK on Jul 30, '02
  8. by   kellyseye
    damn it damn it and double damn it ..... im new here and posted this fabulously long reply only to find i wasnt logged in !! so im not impressed and i wont be rewriting ...... anyway was just really having a sticky beak as im new ...... trying to figure this all out yet ..... seems a tad huge this site ..... should be something i can manage to stuff up quite well ....
    might post again later ..... toodles
  9. by   ORJUNKIE
    Bummer! Love to hear from you. Get it a rest and try again later! Sometimes you just have to regroup! Take care - Carrie