Today we were able to start working! We arrived at the hospital with all of our supplies and promptly and efficiently unpacked and organized it into cubbies. Once that was done, and we were given a quick tour of the facility, we were off to the OR. Kathy and I were in pre- and post-op today, and boy, was it an adventure! It started out slow, but as I was warned, it warmed up.
Our most exhausting case was a prostatectomy. This is a big procedure itself, but the patient was also not a happy camper. When he was first brought to post-op he was given diazepam because he was trying to climb off of the gurney and he was given a second dose 20 minutes later. After he woke up from that we were convinced he was in quite a bit of pain, but pain medicine could not be offered. So instead we took turns holding him down, including our interpreter Basa (who was trying to talk some sense into him), Jeff, Rosie, Kathy, myself and many other OR staff nurses. After almost 2 hours, we convinced the nurses to take him to the ward. Whew! In the meantime we had recovered 2 other women and had our last case in pre-op.
Speaking of our last case, when he came to post-op he needed a little suction done. Unfortunately, our suction machine wasn’t working this morning, so they brought us a new one and then promptly returned to take it elsewhere. Again, without a suction machine, since the OR cases were done for the day, we borrowed their suction. Then we decided he needed a little O2. We had a concentrator and LOTS of tubing, but no nasal cannula. Once we found one, we needed to attach it. We started by removing pieces that we realized didn’t actually belong in the first place. After Kathy tried to see if the O2 was flowing (by putting it in her ear), Jackie discovered the connector piece I found was not actually a connector but a dead end. We had someone cut the connector end and the O2 was finally flowing! The patient soon left for the ward and we were done for the day. I feeling like I am learning a thousand things each day and as a team we are learning dozens of new things each day. All in all it was a very good first day of work!