Cath Lab Nurse vs. Telemetry and CCU Nurse? - page 2
Hello!! I will begin precepting in about two weeks and I am currently scheduled to complete my hours in the Cardiac Cath Lab...I was wondering if anyone knows what a Cath lab nurse does compared to... Read More
Aug 29, '06Pookoo- I was a cath lab nurse for 3 years and recently left. I made more money as a cath lab nurse due to the fact I worked more since I was called in a lot. I generally got a case bonus in addition to 1 1/2 overtime pay- minimum 2 hours. You might want to consider travel nursing in the cath lab since you have experience and the travel RNs I worked with made a lot more money than the rest of the staff. I did travel nursing as an ICU nurse, not a cath lab nurse. Also, go to a busy cath lab, that way you will get more call ins and there are always people who want to give up call.
For anyone considering cath lab, it can be intense- I loved it, but I ended up wanting a life since I was always called in. I agree with the above comments that you need ICU experience with a strong cardaic background and knowledge of hemodynamics. Cath lab patients, contrary to popular believe, can become critical at any given moment especially in disection of an artery or arrythmias. Also, when you get called in the middle of the night for an acute MI, they can be highly unstable. I always loved comments from ICU nurses on what a cruise job cath lab is- if they only had a clue!
Oct 21, '07Hi
I Have Been A Cath Lab Rn For The Past 5 Years. I Am Really Interested In Becoming An Emergency Room Nurse. Does Anyone Have Any Helpful Hints For Me? Education Wise Or Any Study Material I Can Obtain Not To Look So Green Going To The Er?
Aug 1, '08Hi there!
I wanted to ask all of you a question..... I have been an emergency department nurse for over eight years now. I am looking for a change and thought cath lab might be it. I was concerned of the slow pace and routine of the day in the cath lab. I know it is not the excitement of a busy high acuity ED but is it enough for an ED junky? I really need a change and day hours could be beneficial to my health. Anyone have thoughts on this? I tend to resist this type of change....
Aug 1, '08I work in an interventional lab. Previously it was a diagnostic lab and before that it was solely an out patient lab. I first went there in 1992 when it was an out patient lab. So I've seen the full gammit of nursing in labs as it has evolved. OP labs are very nice, laid back, no call, no weekend, no holidays. As we became IP/OP we did call for IABP insertion and pacemakers. Now were on call 15 days a month, every other weekend and most holidays. Pay is a little higher than other areas mostly because we have longer years of experance. We get call pay and 1.6X for call back for a min of 2 hours. so yeas I make about 20-30% more than if I work in the unit.... but in the Winter I have no life.
What do we do? I have an extensive background in cardiac nursing. I started out in tele in 1985, moved to an ICU and a small ER. Eventually did open heart. I taught ACLS for 16 years. as a nurse in the CCL we do conscious sedation for PCI, dx caths, pacemakers, BiV's, EP studies. We monitor the patient AT ALL TIMES (as everyone does), we resuce patients with drugs, defib. Comfort the patient.
We also circulate the case and get supplies, stents, guide caths, balloons. We rotate thru all postions in my lab. I scrub also devices, PCIs. I also record. I would be bored if I didn't.
I spend a LOT OF TIME IN LEAD! Something that other ares never think about. We are on our feet for 12-14 hours a day with 10-15 lbs of lead on our backs. Radiation exposure is an occupational hazard. Back injuries are common.
We do a lot of teaching in the hospital. We do a lot of IAPB instals and troublshooting of pacemakers. Some of us even interagate pacemakers.
Jul 4, '10hi am due to attend an interview next week in cath lab,for that i need to prepare a 10minute presentation of "the biggest development in cardiac cath lab in the past 10yrs" any body has any ideas/suggesions please share it with me thanks
Jul 4, '10Quote from OrphieAccording to ACCN, a Telemetry/PCU nurse may work in a cath lab. I agree I have worked Tele/PCU for over 3 years and I float to ICU and ER. Now I work in prn pool and able to float between those 3 units. To the unit that is in greater need. I have taken drips on tele no titrating. I definitely take drips in ICU. I am preparing for my PCCN as I speak.Hey Bethiegirl!
I am a former cathlab nurse. I went directly to cathlab from telemetry, and I found cathlab to be very hard. This is because I didn't know the waveforms, or how some of the cardiac drugs worked. The other cathlab nurses were all experienced CCU or ICU nurses, and were pretty intolerant of a person with less background than they had. They made it a bit more difficult for me than I think it should have been, but I loved the job - it was exciting and I learned something new every day!
I stopped cathlab nursing three years ago due to my husband's job transfer and a pregnancy, and am now working in CVRU, which recovers cathlab patients. Right now, I work alongside ICU nurses (who are very smart and accepting) until the new CVRU unit is up and running. I am not back in cathlab because I have a toddler that I'm not ready to put in daycare yet. Cathlab requires weekday hours, and for you to take call on nights and weekends.
My advice? Tele is a good start, but I really wouldn't try cathlab unless you have CCU or ICU experience. I don't think many cathlabs hire people without that kind of experience anyway.
Good luck!Last edit by lkwashington on Jul 4, '10
Jul 4, '10Quote from CathMarkRNI totally agree. Dont shoot yourself in the foot.It the lab I work in we prep, circulate and do the initial recovery. The patient develop-es a relationship and trust with you and this seems to work well.
I wouldn't recommend a new nurse to start in a CCL because of the many technical info you need to learn. You need to be ACLS certified and know how to use it. You have to be on your toes at times and think ahead. During angioplasty things get hectic and you need to work fast as well as be accurate in what you are doing.
If you were to spend 6 months to a year on a nursing floor doing cardiac then the transition to the lab should go well...
Jul 5, '10Quote from souphiClosure devices..angioseal,mynx, and there are others. Definately saves time without the need for line pulls,and I'm sure less complications with groins too.hi am due to attend an interview next week in cath lab,for that i need to prepare a 10minute presentation of "the biggest development in cardiac cath lab in the past 10yrs" any body has any ideas/suggesions please share it with me thanks
Jul 5, '10
Jul 7, '10Quote from ceannAin't that the truth!! I had 5 hrs ICU experience and the amount of work I do in the cath lab blows that away..
. I always loved comments from ICU nurses on what a cruise job cath lab is- if they only had a clue!
And ICU or ED experience is vital for the lab. This is no place for newbies...
Aug 2, '10Quote from CCL RNLol. That's supposed to say 5 years experience, instead of 5 hours...Ain't that the truth!! I had 5 hrs ICU experience and the amount of work I do in the cath lab blows that away. ...