General Practice placement week 5

Here I am again, about to chew your ears off about how incredible general practice is and what a great week I have had.

Firstly, a patient I had referred on for a problem I had picked up on whilst they were in my clinic, came back to thank me for the referral and that my judgment was correct on the health issue. She even gave me some nice biscuits to go along side the thank you! My mentor gave me a lovely ‘well done’ too and this actually made my day. It sounds absolutely silly but it just gave me such a lovely glow in my heart to hear it. To know I had actually done a good job. Nonetheless, it’s probably not so nice for the patient but at least she is now being cared for appropriately.

I have also assisted with a minor surgery clinic, how exciting is that?! I was not sure what type of surgery this would be so I stood by eager to learn. We had a lovely doctor come and do the procedures needed and he explained everything as he went along to me (with consent of the patient).

I witnessed:

  • Steroid injection into the knee
  • Steroid injection into the thumb
  • Steroid injection into the shoulder
  • A removal of a small wart

It was very interesting and I found myself asking lots of questions about the causes of the patients joint problems they had, which could be so many different things.

It was really great to put some of my knowledge about steroids to the test too and build on the knowledge. As I had already been revising about oral steroids for MS, I was keen to find out how the injection differs from this. As it is an injection into the space between the joint, there is less of the more systematic affect it has, such as; suppressing the immune system. Furthermore, it keeps the affect of anti-inflammatory to the local area.

I asked the patients if they had the injection before and how long it managed their symptoms for. The response varied between the patients but overall a 3-6 months for the majority of them. That surprised me, I assumed it would only manage the symptoms for a couple of weeks maybe. Fantastic piece of new information for me that I can pass on to other patients who ask me about this in the future.

Evidence based practice at its best

I was given a couple of tasks by my mentor; 1: To compile some travel vaccine information and forms for patients. 2: To put together a mental health management plan template for the computer system.

My mentor gave me the relevant websites for the travel vaccines, I had to then pick the ones that would be useful to our clinic, edit them and print them / staple them all together. I then scrolled the internet on official NHS and mental health websites for some ideas to put into the management plan. I have put everything into a word document and saved a few sites into a folder for my mentor to look through on Monday. Fingers crossed I am on the right track as this is something I have never done before. I love being given challenges to complete, it really helps me to build my knowledge and skills as a nurse.

To end my week, I spent Friday with the doctor seeing a variety of patients. I enjoy doing this to experience the whole clinic and the different roles within it.

I discovered a new tool today! A tuning fork, something I have never seen nor heard of before. This device is used to check a patients hearing; distinguish between conductive and sensorineural deafness.

Overall, another incredible week of learning! I have 3 more weeks left and I really do not want to leave general practice nursing. I shall be making the most of every second 💙

So for now, have a fantastic weekend and I shall be back next week.



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