Quote from bethiegirl
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 a telemetry or CCU nurse? I want to be a cardiac nurse and would like to know whether I should consider doing telemetry first and then Cath lab...PLEASE enlighten me!!!
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.