Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Work-Life Balance - January 2017 - Subscribe to Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Outpatient Surgery Magazine, providing current information on Surgical Services, Surgical Facility Administration, Outpatient Surgery News and Trends, OR Excellence and more.

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Are We Conditioned Like Pavlov's Dogs? How surgical nurses reflexively respond to the sounds of surgery. Y ou're busy charting a case. Across the room you hear the slight sound of a vendor tearing the plastic from a knee implant box. You stand up, walk over to the rep and stretch out your hand to take the implant out of the box. Yes, you are Pavlov's dog, conditioned to respond to the sounds of surgery. Some make us drool. Others make us foam at the mouth. • Tones. The pulse oximeter beeps along and I don't even notice it any- more. That is, until that tone starts to plummet. Then my ears perk up like a German Shepherd's and I'm all up under anesthe- sia's axilla wanting to know what the crap is going on and how to make it stop. • Fire alarms. Causes a guttural growl in me. I know. We have to do scheduled fire alarm tests to comply with all the regulatory bosses. But really, the alarm goes off now and, like everyone else, I barely do a quick sideways glance while trying to locate where, in heaven's name, is this patient's urethra. The noise is annoying enough, but now I have strobe lights blinding me and I'm having to give it a Hail Mary on the Foley and hope for the best. • Cautery alarms. I know they're for patient safe- ty, but cautery alarms make me foam at the mouth and utter bad words under my breath. I'll do any- 1 6 2 • O U T PA T I E N T S U R G E R Y M A G A Z I N E • J A N U A R Y 2 0 1 7 Behind Closed Doors Paula Watkins, RN, CNOR

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