A Great Combo: Food Poisoning and My First Clinical Day!

I got food poisoning this week when I finally had me time. Sighs…… when I was laying in bed, it reminded me of my last food poisoning on my first clinical day in the OR…..

I can still remember vividly the night before my first clinical day in the OR. It all happened when I had the damn Chinese take-out that night after I got home from school.

“hun…. I dun feel well….. my stomach is churning nonstop… I was telling my husband after we put the kids to bed at 9pm.

“maybe it is just nerves since you are going to start your clinical tomorrow?”

“I am going to throw up. It must be the Chinese food!” I told my husband. Half an hour later, I was still hugging the toilet. This is a great start of my clinical tomorrow I said to myself!!! Sighs…. on the positive side, at least I should be OK tomorrow, I was comforting myself while waiting for the next wave of vomit.

A sick woman with high fever

At 4o’clock, I was woken by my stomachache again. I retched as a cramp caused any residual digested food to come up. This was miserable. I felt awful. I pondered on whether I should call in sick to my clinical coordinator. What would they think of me to call in sick on my first day of clinical day? I wondered. Would they think I am weak? Would I be behind if I miss today? Maybe I would be OK after this vomit. I decided that I should go to my clinical and put on my best behavior as expected of me.

My preceptor was very nice and he took me in the OR after our orientation. We just sat down behind the drape. “You know I had a student who passed out in the OR the first day when he saw blood. Isn’t that funny?” He said to me. My face turned pale like a ghost. I was having cold sweating as I was having stomach cramp. “I don’t feel so good.” I said to my preceptor. “You are not passing out on me, are you? You don’t look so hot. Lets get you out and breathe some fresh air.” My preceptor still kept his sense of humor. As he helped me get up and made it to the anesthesia workroom, everything turned black before I made it to the chair. Next thing I know, they were calling me my name…… I guess I did pass out after all. What a coincidence!!!

I took a nap on an empty journey in the morning to rest up. I went back in the OR in the afternoon as I was determined to not miss my first clinical day!!! In retrospective, I wish I had stayed home and rested up. All this drama wouldn’t have had happened lol……

What is the points of my story? You may ask. I wanted to tell you that if you are a SRNA who is going to start your clinical, please do not get overly stressed. Now I am the preceptor, I can tell you that I wouldn’t mind at all if my student misses his/her clinical due to illness. If you aren’t feeling well, take care of yourself first. You will have plenty of days in the OR during your training. Missing one or two days wouldn’t make a difference. We preceptors wouldn’t think differently if you call in sick!!!

I hope this post is helpful to those SRNAs who are about to start your clinical! Take care of yourself first and everything else comes in second!


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