What is a rotation in "surgery" or "surgical"?


  • Specializes in Perioperative Nursing - ENT, CTC, Vasc.. Has 7 years experience.

Yes, believe it or not, I'm a 3rd semester upper-division BSN student, going into 2nd semester of clinicals, and this has me confused.... We have an Adult Health I class and an OB class this semester, a total of about 12 weeks of clinicals. We got our schedules, and I am scheduled for 8 weeks in both "surgery" and "ortho/neurosurgery" and "surgical" (that is the "big description"). We also do 2 days in an ambulatory surgery center (this is my "Perioperative rotation" on my schedule), and then I do 2 days in "medical".

I saw that some girls go to the "OR" and the "PACU" one day out of the whole semester. I don't go to those places at all. But the girls in my group and I have a lot more "surgical" rotation than other students do. Some other students have a lot more "medical" than my group does.

What I first thought was that "surgical" and "surgery" means I'd be in the OR, which had me really excited because I shadowed in the OR last semester and I loved it so much more than the med/surge we'd been doing. But then I thought maybe it's just a med/surge floor with different kinds of patients...

So what do you think that means? I don't want to get my hopes up for an OR rotation, only to find out when I get there in 2 weeks that it's what I call a med/surge floor.

Thanks. :bow:


58 Posts

Sounds like it is vague as to where you will be. We dont get our schedules until an orientation we have on a designated day that is not in our normal class time; that is also where they explain what each rotation is. My guess at first was OR, but then I continued reading and it could be different. If you can wait until you get further instrunction (which I couldnt do), I would talk to some of the other students that have already done this semester.


72 Posts

Last quarter my unit was called 6South Surgical. I had no idea what to expect at first but when I got to the unit it was a post-surgical unit. Most of what we did was similar to a med floor but with the addition of a lot of wound care.

I'm not sure what your situation will be but my advice would be to enjoy what ever type of learning experience you can get. Good luck!


118 Posts

Specializes in Perioperative Nursing - ENT, CTC, Vasc.. Has 7 years experience.

Oh thanks for your replies :o) I did ask my mother-in-law, who has been an RN for 35+ years, she said it is post-op patients, and I would probably be doing a lot of wound care or maybe not, depending on who the patient is. So I'm allright. Just wanted to know before I got there. I actually had almost all post-op patients last semester but didn't do much wound care because they weren't big incisions and they went home so quickly.

She said "medical" are patients with things like pneumonia, diabetes, etc.

I still love O.R. though but knew it was too much to expect that much O.R. so soon. The same MIL will be getting a job in an OR soon (she worked in one before, now works in Endoscopy, which was her specialty for a very long time), and she said she loves it.

As for not having any O.R. time this semester - I did get a day in O.R. last semester, when only a few of us did. So I had my chance. :o)

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