Should I drop this class????

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I haven't started the nursing program yet. I won't until Spring 2005. Right now I'm still working on getting all my pre-reqs finished. All I have left to do is micro and A&P II. Well, this summer I am enrolled in micro and the class just started today. I am 34 weeks pregnant and our instructor warned us that in lab we will be working with microorganisms that "have the potential to cause disease", for example, E coli. This sounds dangerous to me and I don't want to put my baby at risk. I didn't know this before taking this class or else I just would have waited. Should I drop this class and just wait?? For all of you that have taken micro what kind of microorganisms did you work with??

We were only exposed to microbes on a slide. If you wear gloves (mask when there is fluid that might splash) you should be safe. However, if it worries you, drop the class. Another semester will not matter in the long run and your sanity is worth something.


27 Posts

As long as proper lab technique and proper handwashing is observed, I wouldn't think there would be a problem (just finished a micro course).



703 Posts

Specializes in PACU.

u should be fine, just follow lab safety rules. througout school and your nursing career u will be exposed, so u should get used to following safety precautions. i wish you all the best in whatever u decide!


4 Posts

There were 2 pregnant moms in my micro class, and the babies all came out fine. Use good technique and you'll be fine.

Good Luck!


592 Posts

Specializes in Geriatrics, Pediatrics, Home Health.

I'm taking micro now and we do use E Coli BUT we also have E Coli in our bodies naturally [intestines]. We innoculated a virus into the E. Coli that is specific to E. Coli ONLY. Our lab instructor is really good at telling us which ones can hurt us and to make sure we wash our hands before and after lab. I LOVE Micro.

Good luck and I think you will be fine!!


470 Posts

In my class that just finished I had 2 pregnant friends. One delivered 1/2 way through class and the other is due this week. The professor was very cool about it. She gave them Staph. epideridus (sp?) instead of Staph. aureus, little things like that. But in the end they just made sure they wore gloves, lab coat that stayed in lab only and let their lab partners handle the more dangerous bacteria that we got at the the gram neg lab about Salmonella, Shigella, etc.


113 Posts

I worked for 10 years as a Food Microbiologist and worked with many pathogens such as Staph, Salmonella and Listeria. Neither I or anyone else I worked with ever managed to infect themselves with anything. It sounds scary, but with correct techniques you have nothing to fear. Remember that these organisms can't fly - they pretty much stay where they're put, so unless you do something spectacular, like drop a test-tube of broth culture, you should be pretty safe. If you do have an accident, here are some tips that we learned:

If you drop something - a contaminated plate or tube of broth then IMMEDIATELY hold your breath (stop breathing, don't take a big breath first!) and move away from the area straight away. DO NOT bend down over it and try to clean it up. In the lab I worked in, a dropped tube or plate was cause for immediate lab evacuation for 1 hour, while the aerosols settled, then we went in and started the decontamination work.

Cover all cuts with waterproof bandages and wear gloves. If you cut yourself on something that is contaminated, immediately start to squeeze out as much blood as possible (the blood will wash bacteria out of the wound) Keep squeezing blood out and rinsing it away under running water, then apply antiseptic and a bandage.

Another little known tip is to keep one of those plastic squeezy lemon juice bottles handy. If culture splashes up into your mouth, rinse out your mouth with copious amounts of acidic lemon juice - it's a very effective antibacterial agent.

The most important thing is to take your time, rest your elbows on the bench for stability when transferring cultures/plating etc., and keep your area free of clutter. Mentally go through the procedure before actually doing it. You will be just fine. Microbiology is fascinating, and I'm sure you will find the course enjoyable :)



35 Posts

I am in Microbiology right now and if you take the necessary precautions (handwashing and cleaning your environment before and after working with microorganisms you shouldn't have a problem.

In my class, we work in groups. If this is the case in your class you can make sure someone else in your group handles the microoganisms.


3,905 Posts

Same here. Two students had babies during the Micro course I took. No problems.

You should be fine as long as you're careful.


Specializes in ICU, CM, Geriatrics, Management.

You'll be fine.

Still... be careful!


739 Posts

Specializes in OBGYN, Neonatal.

I agree - handwashing, and safety precautions. But I also agree, your sanity is worth something so it depends on your personal choice.

You should be A-Ok following standard safety precautions!

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