Skip to Main Content

We have a new app!

Take the Access library with you wherever you go—easy access to books, videos, images, podcasts, personalized features, and more.

Download the Access App here: iOS and Android


  1. Don’t know what OR I’m in?

    • Every OR has a front desk or a schedule of some sort. Ask the individuals at the desk where your doctor is going to be and how to get to that OR.

  2. Don’t know who my doctor is that day?

    • If you are a medical student and you are not sure where you are supposed to be, you can ask at the front desk, but it is probably best to arrange this the night before with your resident.

  3. Have a question or need help?

    • Ask. If you notice something or don’t feel comfortable speaking up, turn to one of the staff members and ask them. But you are always safer speaking up. If you need help, ask the circulator or scrub technician. They will help you and keep you out of trouble. Being new to this environment is hard. Ask for help.

  4. Have a latex allergy?

    • Speak up before you enter the OR/start your rotation. ORs have latex-free carts that contain latex-free products, including gloves. If you are scrubbing in, the gloves will be the most important thing to grab. If you are highly sensitive, you want to make sure that the scrub technician is wearing latex-free gloves too, so the powder from their gloves does not get on your gloves. Many ORs are working toward becoming latex free, but definitely ask if it is a concern for you.

  5. Don’t know my glove size?

    • You can ask others what their size is if they have similar hands, but the best way is to just try a size and see how it fits for you. Glove size is changeable—if your fingers are being strangled, or your gloves are falling off, try the next size up or down.

  6. Don’t know my gown size?

    • Similar to gloves, try one on and see how it fits. If your circulator is unable to tie it up behind you, chances are that you need a bigger size. In some facilities, gowns may be one size fits all.

  7. Can’t get my jewelry off?

    • Use all of the strategies you can think of (and then look on YouTube for more). Your jewelry must come off in order to scrub—no exceptions.

  8. Contaminate myself when I’m scrubbed in or am not sure if I contaminated something?

    • That depends…you may just need a new glove, or you may need to remove your gown and scrub in again. Always ask.

    • When in doubt, throw it out. Maybe not literally. The item may be re-usable, so ask the scrub or circulator before just tossing it. If there is ever a question about whether something is contaminated or not, assume it is not sterile. You may need to change gloves or your gown if you have touched it or it touched you.

  9. Forgot to put on my eye-gear?

    • Ask the circulator if they can grab some for you. To prevent this, do ...

Pop-up div Successfully Displayed

This div only appears when the trigger link is hovered over. Otherwise it is hidden from view.