Posts Tagged ‘ skills lab ’

It’s That Time Again

First day of the new semester today.
We spent a couple of hours in orientation and the traditional ‘get to know you’ activities.

Then it was right back to it!! Skills lab for urine dips, hemoccults (testing for blood in stool), and nitrazine paper (testing for amniotic fluid…done for women who think there water is breaking when pregnant and have been “leaking”) checkoffs were all completed.
We were a half hour late for lunch and had to shave 15 minutes off of it so that we could go home on time.

I think third semester is settling in quite nicely.

The classroom is a lot roomier with so many people gone now 😦
Everyone was more spread out.

I like my theory instructor a lot. She’s hilarious. And she has been in the medical field for over 46 years. And apparently knows all there is to know on mamas and babies. Which is what this whole semester happens to be about.

I couldn’t be more excited. I’ve been waiting for pediatrics since Day ONE.
There I go again with the excitement.

Back to the books for now though. Already have reading to do, a test next Monday, and a group project due in two weeks on breast cancer prevention for women.

As my N-2000 instructor likes to say in her long, southern drawl: “We’re movin’ on up! You’re gonna hit the ground runnin’!!”


[photo cred here.]


Simulation Lab

Well, today I’m at clinical in the simulation lab at school. I have to be honest, the Sim. Lab frightens me to know end.
Why? At the end of last semester, we had a simulation lab without ever being told what one was or what to expect. We actually didnt even know we were going to a skills lab that was any different. In this kind of lab though….anything can happen. Patients can throw up, scream, seize, die, need multiple IVs, suctioning, catheters, Hemovac drains, angry families….all at once!!! Last semester, I was in the first group to go and was trying to give meds while the patient (which had a voice box) was screaming and throwing up. Scarred for life.
The horror stories of simulation lab are pretty amazing. The first group to go this semester had multiple students crying in front of their patients apparently. And because they cried in front of their patients (which are dummies but are supposed to be treated like real patients in a real clinical setting) they got marked down. Some groups got sent home for “not coming in with any brain density” and being totally unprepared. I’m in the second group which is this week and next.
The first half went pretty well though- no tears yet!!
We have scenarios with three patients in each one. We switch roles for each patient. For the first patient, I was the silent observer which was great. For the second one, I was charge nurse overseeing all the other roles, guiding, and documenting along with talking with the doctors. I did a good job and got excellent feedback which I am very excited about!

In the last scenario I was the IV/treatment nurse and did a dressing change, trach care, and suctioning. I started off not remembering some stuff but after I got over my nerves it was a piece of cake.
Overall, a great clinical day 🙂

Break is Over

So, Spring Break is long over and I’m back from my hiatus. I know you’re totally excited. Last night I went and saw the new Fast and the Furious movie with Ishaq and 2 of my brothers-in-law at 10:30pm. It wasn’t bad- as far as those kinds of movies go at least. The day before, Ishaq took me out on a date and we saw Monsters vs. Aliens in 3D. It was cute! It was also his first 3D movie which he loved.

Skills Lab was on Monday. We learned about oxygenation and the first half of medication. We went over the different types of oxygen masks and learned how to crush up meds, deliver them, and sign off on our MARs (medication administration records).

Clinicals on Tuesday was AMAZING. I got to follow the Wound Care RN around early even though we haven’t learned it in lecture yet. I ADORE my clinical instructor. I learn so much from her and we get the most opportunities here than any other clinical group. Wound care was ridiculous. I thought I would be totally grossed out but I found it fascinating more than anything. Kaego taught us everything we needed to know about it. She had so much passion for what she was doing that it was truly inspiring. I saw amputations, a lot of pressure ulcers, and the skull of a man who had a brain tumor. She was really amazing. Halfway through the shadowing, I was able to differentiate between all 4 stages of pressure ulcers, tell if a patient was diabetic or not and how good their blood flow was based off the wound bed, and what to use to treat it and why. For me, all of the wound care information just clicked. I don’t know if I could be a wound nurse, but I sure found it fascinating!
My lesson of the week? Speak up and trust my skills more. I had an opportunity to be one of the first in my group to do a in-and-out cath. It was SR’s pt., but she hadn’t gone to skills lab so she wasn’t allowed to. So it was between me and two other girls. I didn’t really try to do it because I like to see a procedure done first, but after we picked KR to do it, we talked about the procedure in the hall. I realized there that I did know what I was doing and could have done the cath no problem. Plus, watching it, I re-realized that, well, that’s what our instructors are there for. Duh!! So, I’m going to [attempt] to stop waiting for someone else to do it first and trust my skills more. I know my skills dang it!!

BedBath, Say What?

So, lab went really well on Monday. Better than I thought. It was awkward going in but M.Y. talked me through it since her hand was hurt and she couldnt participate. She’s a repeater for health reasons, but it was good to have her knowledge. It made me less uncomfortable.
Giving good mouth care? Use a 45 degree angle when brushing your patients teeth. And don’t choke them with their own toothbrush, thanks.
Bedbath? Start with the face and use a different corner for each eye. Go distal to proximal on the extremeties and please, please, please use long strokes. It helps circulation.

We also learned how to use a quick release knot when using restraints.

Ho hum.

Oh, I also learned how to change a bed while someone is in it and make it tidy along with putting an adult diaper on. Handy!!


So, my first assessment lab went really really well. I feel really comfortable with doing assessments now. Ishaq let me practice on him yesterday and it went without a hitch! I even remembered everything!
Our first test was today and I think I did really well. I’ll find out in the morning. And by really well, I mean passing. You have to make an 80% or above to pass. Rawr.
I’m heading over to my in-laws house now. Baba isn’t feeling well. Neither am I.

I’ll update mañana as soon as I find out my grade….

“flew home back to where we met, stayed inside I was so upset, cooked up a plan so good except…. I was nineteen, call me.”


Yesterday was my first skills lab. I’m now proficient in creating nursing diagnoses. Heck yes! We got to wear our nifty lab coats and had to look professional. Well, we’re supposed to at least. There’s a repeater in our class who opted to wear a velour sweatsuit instead.  Eh, to each his own?

So, we were given case studies and had to put the data on our care-planning tools (CPTs) and formulate diagnostic statements. For instance, P.L. has continuous incontinence r/t diminished bladder cues or impaired ability to recognize bladder cues secondary to CVA (stroke) AEB patient complaints of continually wetting himself day and night.
Mrs. Jones suffers from Deficient Fluid Volume related to vomiting and diarrhea as evidenced by dark yellow urine and dry mucous membranes.

Poor P.L. and poor Mrs. Jones.

I’ve got my first assessment lab on Monday. We’ll be doing our cephalocaudals (head-to-toe assessments examining all of the systems individually). Hoo-rah.

Oh, and Unit I test on Tuesday. Rawrgh.

Today’s been a good day. Woke up to breakfast and coffee made by Isaac and a lovely phone call from mom. I’m content.
And sleepy. Awful sleepy.

Alright, back to transcribing my notes. More to come.