Been a nurse straight out of school on a medically (rather than surgically) focused cardiac step-down unit for 14 months and just scored a position at my hospital's CVICU, which is supposedly according to those Newsweek articles, one of the best in the United States
- I'm comfortable with all of the major IV/PO cardiac meds, including IV prostacyclins (i.e. Flolan).
- I'm surprisingly one of the few nurses in my current locations that is comfortable navigating a 12-lead and recognizing/explaining heart blocks and aberrancies.
- I can interpret ABGs quickly.
- I was never taught in school, but have started a few IVs on a generous (albeit healthy) co-worker.
- I've taken a leadership role in my share of codes this past year.
- My assessment skills/EKG interpretation is thorough and has helped prevent a patient from going into cardiac tamponade as well as getting others to a higher level of care so they didn't deteriorate further.
I've done very well as a new grad coming to that floor and believe I'm ready to take it to the next level (we'll see right?)
So, all you CVICU nurses, what gems/advice/quiz questions can you give me?
I've been studying intensely (I can tell you about normal ranges for CVP, wedge, MAP, CO/CI, facts about propofol, nipride, levo, etc...) I played a little with A-lines back in school during clinical rotations in SICU. Need to learn some more about vent settings/intubated patients, chest tubes, CRRT, IABPs and other surgical do-dads, so advice about these are especially appreciated
And all those damn stopcocks
...I always pushed adenosine straight in with someone else holding a flush in the port...