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Posted almost 3 years ago
I've made it through my entire RN program without failing a class until now. Graduation was 7 weeks away! It was cardio. I passed the class and failed the clinical for something I did in the last hour of the last clinical day.
My patient's IV alarm was beeping for air in the line. The IV was a 50cc bag of an antibiotic. I held the button to advance the air until we saw an inch long section with 5 little bubbles. My instructor asked me what I wanted to do. I said leave it because that much air wasn't a problem. That's what we did in the lab and I've seen nurses do it a dozen times. Professor had me disconnect it from patient and let if flow into the garbage.
I didn't know the exact numbers on air bubbles until I researched it that night. 100-300ml to kill somebody and AT LEAST 20ml to possibly cause damage. An entire primary IV line is about 20ml.
After finals, professor pulls me into office to fail me for violating 7 critical nursing skills related to the bubbles.
I checked my skills book and none of the IV troubleshooting charts cover air bubbles. It's tough when you pick up skills from active nurses and are failed for undocumented rules.
Anybody else fail a clinical for something like this?