The Nursing Tools Quiz

By: Teresa McGlothlin

The Nursing Tools Quiz
Image: The Good Brigade / DigitalVision / Getty Images

About This Quiz

Although the biggest tool nurses must have is a willingness to help others, the list of nursing tools is seemingly endless. Nurses are highly trained caretakers, and mastering their equipment is only part of the job. Can you recognize and name the tools we present to you? 

From geriatric nursing to caring for those in the emergency room, nurses have one of the most important jobs in the world. It's a tough job, but nurses seem to live for making others feel better. In order to properly do their jobs, they must be properly equipped - but do you know what tools they use every day?

Everything from thermometers to saline flushes are important parts of a nurse's toolkit, but there's a lot more to being a nurse than taking temperatures or flushing IVs. If you can identify the 40 items we present, you are certain to be a member of the medical community. We haven't chosen anything too difficult, but we do think we will push your knowledge of nursing tools to the test. How many of them can you get right? Put on your nursing hat and give it shot. Then, we'll let you know! 

Stethoscope A nurse uses this tool to check your heartbeat and your blood pressure - what is it?
Manual resuscitator
Pulse oximeter
Sphygmomanometer
Stethoscope
You can almost always count on seeing a stethoscope hanging around a nurse's neck or hidden away in their pocket. They use this valuable tool to check your breathing sounds, heartbeat and your blood pressure.

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Lancet What is this nursing tool used for pricking your finger called?
Lancet
When only a small sampling of your blood is needed, a nurse will use a lancet. Often used to check blood insulin levels, lancets are used to make a little prick on the end of your finger.
Syringe
Finger needle
IV starter

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Syringe Many people are rendered queasy by the sight of this nursing tool - what is it?
Syringe
If you are afraid of needles, this is not the nursing tool for you! Syringes are used for administering medicine and for taking blood samples. They are one of the most frequently used tools in the field.
Hemostat
IV starter
Feeding tube

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Fetal monitor Obstetric nurses use this tool a lot, but do you know what it is?
Cardiac monitor
Ultrasound
X-ray machine
Fetal monitor
Nurses on maternity wards everywhere use the fetal monitor to notate the state of a baby while still in the mother's womb. The fetal monitor allows nurses to keep tabs on the baby's heart rate, blood pressure, and any signs of fetal distress.

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thermometer Nurses use this tool to check your temperature - what name does it have?
Sphygmomanometer
Thermometer
If a nurse suspects that you are running a fever, they will use a thermometer to check. These days, thermometers can digitally read the skin's temperature, saving you from being told to bend over.
Stethoscope
Trauma sheers

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scissors This small tool has a big job in the nursing realm - which name does it have?
Utility scissors
Tucked away in the pocket of nurses everywhere, you will find a pair of utility scissors. Used for everything from cutting gauze to medical tape, a nurse's job is made easier with this tool.
Pinking sheers
Gauze scissors
Pen scissors

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Pen What would you call this seemingly simple but necessary nursing tool?
Pencil
Penlight
Pen
You might not think of pens as being nursing tools, but they are listed as a nursing essential. Nurses need to do a lot of calculations and a lot of remembering things. Having an ample pen supply is a necessity.
Stylus

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Sphygmomanometer Can you name this nursing tool used for checking your blood pressure?
Fetal monitor
Cardiac monitor
Blood meter
Sphygmomanometer
Along with a stethoscope, a nurse uses a sphygmomanometer to check your blood pressure. Your blood pressure numbers can indicate a lot of different things, and your nurse is highly trained to use the commonly called blood pressure cuff to see how you're doing.

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Clipboard Do you know the name of this important office supply that nurses use?
Portable desk
Clipboard
Without the aid of a clipboard, it would be difficult for nurses to keep all of the important patient paperwork together. Using a clipboard also gives nurses on the go a solid surface to write on.
Writing tray
Legal pad

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Scrubs Formal nursing uniforms are mostly a thing of the past - what do they wear now?
Scrubs
Specifically made for the medical field, scrubs are outfits nurses frequently wear. Cotton tops and bottoms are interchangeable, and if the medical facility allows, nurses can customize them for their own senses of style.
Pajamas
Sweats
Khakis

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nursing shoes These nursing tools provide comfort and prevent slips - what do you call them?
Nursing sandals
Nursing shoes
A good pair of nursing shoes is a priceless investment. Not only do proper nursing shoes help prevent slips on wet floors, but they also provide the much-needed support for nurses who spend most of their day on their feet.
Nursing boots
Nursing sneakers

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face mask This helpful tool helps keep nurses healthy - can you name it?
Hairnet
Face shield
Chest shield
Face mask
Can you imagine the number of germs nurses are exposed to every day? Wearing a face mask helps to prevent illness, and it helps to avoid any flying fluids that a nurse might breathe in.

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Gown When a nurse needs to cover up their scrubs, what do they wear?
Apron
Gown
When nurses are in surgery or they are dealing with a messy scene, it is not uncommon for them to use a gown over their scrubs. Wearing a gown provides an extra layer of protection from any unwanted exposure.
Poncho
Uniform top

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analog watch No nursing kit is complete without this important tool - do you know what it is?
Analog watch
In order to check your pulse rate or your heart rate, a nurse needs to time them. A nursing watch with a second hand is a very important tool for nurses to have.
Digital watch
Stethoscope
Pulse oximeter

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Hemostats What do you call this tool that helps to hold things together?
Utility scissors
Scissor clip
Hemostat
Sometimes, nurses need to hold together things like bandages and tubes. With the use of the hemostat, it makes their job a lot easier. The hemostat might look like scissors, but its locking design is quite useful.
Hand forcepts

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Penlight A nurse might use this tool to look at your tonsils - do you know what the industry calls it?
Laser pointer
Internal light
Flashlight
Penlight
If your nurse needs to check your tonsils or the reaction of your pupils, they would utilize a penlight. Designed to clip onto a nurse's pocket or lanyard, a penlight really comes in handy when assessing patients.

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Badge Clip This underrated tool helps you identify your nurse - can you name it?
Security badge
Name tag
Badge clip
For security reasons, nurses are issued ID cards that allow them access to certain parts of a medical building. Additionally, ID cards are helpful for identifying your nurse. To secure them, a lot of nurses use badge clips.
Business card

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Shoe covers Nurses might wear these in the surgical theater. Do you know what they are?
Compression socks
Gloves
Shoe covers
Shoe covers are an underrated piece of nursing equipment. Whether trying to keep a surgery room clean or working with a messy scene, shoe covers help to protect nurses from fluids. They also help to keep sterile environments free from any contaminants found on your shoes.
Hair covers

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Gauge You couldn't dress a wound without this - what is it?
Gauze
When nurses dress wounds, the use sterile gauze like you see in the picture. With the help of utility scissors, gauze helps keep an infection prone area clean.
Medical tape
Suture kit
Alginate dressing

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Medical Tape Nurses use many feet of this over the course of their careers - what kind of tape is it?
Duct tape
Double-sided tape
Washi tape
Medical tape
From dressing wounds to holding IVs in place, medical tape is a nursing necessity. Medical tape is different from other kinds of tape because it easily removed from the skin.

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Alcohol swab Nurses use the tool seen here for sterilization - what could you call it?
Cleaning cloth
Alcohol swab
Before administering a shot or taking blood, nurses will prep your skin with an alcohol swab. Using alcohol helps to remove dirt and bacteria that might cause complications like infections.
Prep pads
Iodine swabs

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Pulse oximeter Can you tell us the name of this fingertip tool?
Lancet
Splint
Pulse oximeter
If you've recently visited the doctor, your nurse has probably placed a pulse oximeter on the end of your finger. The pulse oximeter measures the level of oxygen in your blood.
Thimble

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Manual resuscitator Which name is given to the CPR aid seen in this photo?
Defibrillator
Ventilator
Bagged resuscitator
Manual resuscitator
In the event that CPR needs to be administered in a medical facility, nurses often employ the use of manual resuscitators. The manual resuscitator is a bag that works like air being breathed into the lungs. It is a substitute for mouth-to-mouth.

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Pocket drug guide Your nurse might carry this reference guide - do you know what it is called?
Pocket diagnostic guide
Pocket patient rights guide
Pocket drug guide
Your nurse is often responsible for monitoring and administering your medications. They often carry a pocket drug guide to keep themselves informed about dosage levels and possible side effects.
Pocket terminology guide

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Defibrillator Can you choose the correct name for this heart-starting tool?
Heart shocker
Defibrillator
When a medical team needs to give someone's heart a little jump start, they will use the defibrillator. A defibrillator helps to restore the heart's natural rhythm and often prevents death.
Jumpstarter kit
Cardiac electrode

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Saline flushes In order to keep IVs running smoothly, nurses often flush them out using these - what are they?
Iodine flushes
Alcohol flushes
Saline flushes
To keep fluids moving smoothly, nurses must use saline flushes to clean out the lines. Saline flushes might resemble a syringe, but they are designed to make IV tubes stay clear with no disruption to the patient.
Water flushes

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calculator Nurses do a lot more complicated math than you may imagine - what is the name of this helpful device?
Smartphone
Computer
iPad
Calculator
Nurses often have to calculate things like dosages, food intake and urinary output. Using a calculator is a far more accurate way to get the numbers right than doing them in your head. In fact, nurses use calculators so much that they are sometimes incorporated onto their clipboards.

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gloves For both their safety and yours, nurses wear a lot of these. What are they?
Hair covers
Face masks
Gloves
One of the most frequently used tools by nurses is gloves. In order to avoid contact with bodily fluids and to keep an environment sterile, gloves are an essential part of every nursing tool kit.
Shoe covers

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Band-aid After a nurse takes your blood, the puncture is covered with what thing seen here?
Steri-strip
Butterfly bandage
Band-aid
To help stop the bleeding, your nurse might cover your puncture after taking blood with a band-aid. You might not think of a band-aid as a nursing tool, but they go through dozens of them a day.
Suture cover

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emesis basin If you feel sick, your nurse might hand you one of these - can you name it?
Emesis basin
When we expel fluids from our mouths, it is called emesis. Luckily for us, nurses always seem to have an emesis basin nearby that saves you the embarrassment of making a mess.
Portable toilet
Vomit collector
Feeding tray

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IV starter In order to administer fluids, nurses must use this tool to get started - what would you call it?
Lancet
IV starter
When you require intravenous fluids, your nurse might be asked to start an IV. An IV starter is used to begin, and then it is left for your arm to be attached to other parts of the IV equipment.
Syringe
Vein opener

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Feeding tube Sometimes patients need extra nutrition, what do nurses use to deliver it to the body?
Feeding accessory
Feeding tray
Feeding spoon
Feeding tube
Sometimes patients need extra nutrition, but they are unable to eat. In these cases, nurses use a specially designed feeding tube to get the job done.

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Medical toilet When you need to go but you can't get out of bed, what would your nurse bring you?
Fluid basin
Personal potty
Plastic throne
Medical toilet
During situations where patients are unable to get out of bed, a medical toilet will be brought into the room. Your nurse will either bring you a bedside toilet or a bedpan, but both are known as medical toilets.

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Computer Your nurse will sometimes wheel one of these around - what is it called?
Computer
Technology has changed the field of nursing. Instead of being tethered to a desk to punch in patient information, nurses can now travel through the halls with their computers.
Patient record keeper
Medical history cart
Electronic clipboard

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Cardiac monitor What is the name of this important machine nurses use to keep track of your beats?
Cardiac monitor
Heaven forbid you need someone to watch your heart's function! If you do, your nurse will hook you up to a cardiac monitor like the one seen here.
Pulse oximeter
Blood pressure monitor
Fetal monitor

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Suction pump When there's too much fluid, a nurse will use this machine to remove it - what is it named?
Suction generator
Suction pump
During surgery, there may be a little too much blood for the doctor to see what is happening. The doctor may ask the nurse to use a suction pump to remove the excess fluid so that the surgery may safely continue.
Suction actuator
Suction dehydrator

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Suture kit Do you know what nurses call this handy group of items?
Emesis kit
Sewing kit
Suture kit
Cutting yourself may result in the need for stitches. Nurses are prepared to help you by setting up this suture kit for your doctor.
Wound kit

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Compression socks These special garments help keep nurses on their feet, do you know their name?
Tube socks
Elastic socks
Granny socks
Compression socks
Nurses are often on their feet for up to 12 hours a day, and it can cause some serious issues with swelling and veins. Wearing compression socks like this will help to regulate the blood flow.

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Hair cover You wouldn't want to go into surgery without wearing one of these - what is it called?
Hair pull
Hair net
Hair tie
Hair cover
Surgery rooms are sterile environments. To prevent hair from getting into unwanted places, both doctors and nurses wear hair covers.

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Pharmaceutical pump Do you know the name of this machine nurses use to medicate you?
Pharmaceutical pump
During a hospital stay, you might require medicine for a few days. Using pharmaceutical pumps, nurses can program the machine to administer your dose without waking you up every few hours.
Oximeter pump
IV pump
Heart pump

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