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Silas's Latest Activity

  1. Silas

    Grief in Nursing

    Hey guys, how do you manage and deal with all the grief and sadness we see in healthcare? I am graduating this May with a BSN and working as an aid in an acute ICU. I absolutely love critical care and nursing as a whole, but the amount of pain & sadness that we see on a daily basis has been weighing on me for a week or so. I find it especially challenging when families are coming in to find their loved ones clinging to advanced life support or reading about cancer diagnoses in charts. To see an elderly woman looking at her husband of fifty years unconscious and hooked up to a vent is an indescribable experience. Or the scans showing CA mets to every possible part of someones body. How do you deal with it? Can you really just leave it all at work? I am interested in hearing the guys point of view on this one.
  2. Silas

    Jobs for male nurses

    I've never heard of any quotes either. I have heard of men having an easier time finding work. I currently work as an aid in a teaching hospital in the Boston area, and our HR representative told me new grads who are not internal do not get hired. There are already so many internals graduating every year that we generally take care of ours own first. So to reiterate Kspices advice, get a job as a tech someplace you want to work now as seniority is important.
  3. Silas

    Turning Patients

    Luckily we have a lift in two or our rooms, but it is definitely an across the unit, team effort, to turn these pts. I find it hard to be empathetic sometimes. Last time I asked a pt about what he does/where he eats outside of our very acute unit, and he said how he was a restaurant reviewer and started talking about the best cheese steaks and calzones in the area. Seriously? Its too bad their neurotransmitters/hormones are all screwed up from that obesity and they crave that food, but having to tape hot packs to my lower back sucks. I don't see the demographic projections changing too much
  4. I know a few people who have taken a year off from school for different reasons. Some opted to take a lightened course load, while some completely left for a year to heal, and then returned back in the fall to finish their degree.
  5. Silas

    Patient Sitter

    I didn't read every post on this thread, but I hate sitting. Sitting is a nightmare. I can't sit still and stare at one person for 4-12 hours. I also can't study in a buzzing and beeping room. Sometimes your patient will be calm and asleep, but I've done a lot of agitated/confused/combative patients. Yes, the most challenging patients will try and hit you. Some people can do it and get work done, I would rather quit. Also, if the room is on contact precautions, you won't be taking your textbook in there.
  6. Coping. Doesn't pancreatic cancer have a 20% survival rate after five years regardless of treatment? 39-44 is awfully young to die.
  7. It sucks not to have a few guys you can talk to in the class. Male bonding is important, even in the school/work setting. I agree that being a class room full of girls is a novelty, though they do make waking up early easier, but even with the men in my program (7 of 80 students)... we don't really get along. Honestly make friends on clinical one by one, just be funny, but I don't expect the friendship to go far. The ones you can study with are probably the older, more mature students. (No concerts, TV time, or beer drinking-women just socialize differently-and this relationship is probably going to be about as sterile as a foley). I try and cope by just surrounding myself with my "bros" when I get out of class/clinical/library-they keep me sane with all the estrogen. Remember us men are out there: we are just hiding in ICUs and emergency departments.
  8. You can get stethoscopes engraved and you can put tags on them. I love my III. If it not around my neck, it is in my pocket. It is just like anything else you carry around that you don't leave by itself. It is a tool you will have for a very long time. Like a carpenter and their hammer. Or a barber and their sheers. Or a granny with her walker. The benefits of buying "the best" will pay off over the years that you will own it. (Remember to keep that thing clean though-especially if I am your patient)
  9. Silas

    How to stop beating myself up...

    No one is perfect! Stuff happens. I walk a lot because walking helps me realize that there is so much in the world. Once you get away from the libraries and textbooks and just take a good long stroll, it totally clears the head. Choosing B instead of C on a test sucks, but you won't be any less of a person if you get that question wrong. Your value is independent of your test scores.
  10. I am a junior in nursing school and I think being a nursing student is hard because you are scrambling to acclimate to a real floor where you have a real patient, with real problems, real medications, and real needs for treatment. You need to be competent enough to work with this sick person, understand their medical history (how it presents, what it does to the person, and what we do for it), understand their medications (indications, side effects, teaching), among other things. You are another member of the healthcare team making sure this patient is getting the best possible treatment. You are also liable if they are not. It is also very emotionally draining because here these people are in the worst shape of their life-but you deal with it everyday. You will see the horror stories families have to go through. Strokes, heart attacks, deaths, abuse, etc. It won't really bother you as much because it is every day. A patient might be traumatized due to their history, but it is easy to get into the habit of just shrugging it off: "Oh this is my third patient this week who had a stroke. Not really big news. Nothing new." You can never forget that this person is an individual. That all being said: being a nurse is a honor. To have the abiltiy to work with the public in such a way is something special and unique. The dedication, knowledge, and skill you deliver your patients is challenging-but the reward is definitely there. You don't forget your first patient, the first birth you see, or the first death. You remember special patients. Hope this helps.
  11. I am in my third year of a BSN program. My schedule right now is: M: Class 8a-11a T: Class 8a-10a W: Nill R: Clinical: 7p-3p F: Clinical 3p-9p This is just my nursing schedule, and does not include my elective courses. Bear in mind that the brunt of the work is done at home/library. I do about 12 hours of work for clinical outside of the hospital. Also, reading nursing text books is incredibly time-consuming. You should be spending at least 12 hours of reading/reviewing notes a week.
  12. Silas

    Need abbreviation help

    If anyone goes crazy over abbreviations like me, you can pick up a book by Neil M Davis called: "Medical Abbreviations: 30,000" I bought it thinking I would never use it, and wound up using it a lot. It makes my life so much easier. http://www.amazon.com/Medical-Abbreviations-Conveniences-Expense-Communication/dp/093143114X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1266354401&sr=8-1
  13. Hi everyone, I am a junior nursing student who recently got hired to an ICU/CCU as an aid. The unit is SO fascinating and I dream of critical care nursing when I finish school. I want to succeed in this job through giving my best. I was hoping this community could help me by describing their colleagues: what are the best qualities of the aids on your floor? What do the most effective ones do? Where do you feel like they can improve? I am especially interested in the advice from any current or former aids. Thank you! Have a great weekend
  14. Silas

    mayo clinic summer iii 2010

    Also look into other teaching hospitals near you for other internship opportunities. Good luck!
  15. Silas

    How did you do in O.B.?

    I had a wonderful OB rotation. While it was kind of slow, I got to see a vaginal birth my first day. (I missed the only C/S though). You will spend a lot of time with neonates, as previously stated, because women will feel uncomfortable with a male nurse. Honestly the babies are awesome. They are more fun than the moms. Search for videos on how to change a diaper and wrap a papoose!!! Practice on a football or something. You will need to do these vital tasks repeatedly. By the time I did my first postpartum assessment with my instructor, the rest of the students (girls) were already going through them solo w/o a problem. It just took so long for me to get a willing pt. Smile and be nice to everyone. Ask unit nurses you are not assigned with to be on the look out for pt's who will accept a male caregiver. You want the unit to be behind you. Women's health was hard for me because I just didn't know anything about periods. Or estrogen. Or tampons. Or any of that stuff. Prepare yourself for pt's with history of miscarriage, abuse, and drug addiction. You won't forget your first baby withdrawing from opiates. OB is a wonderful, wonderful field because if all goes well. You get to see a family grow in a very unique way. When I saw my first birth, it was apparent that I just watched a family grow in a way that was entirely unique to anything else in healthcare. It is an extremely powerful (and joyous) moment.
  16. Hi everyone, I am a nursing student who just landed a job as a CNA and am worried about keeping my back healthy with all the lifting, turning, etc. What measures do you take to keep your back healthy? Besides adherence to form, does any do exercise, yoga, or sleep certain ways to make sure they are able to keep working? Thanks!