How is CVICU different from ICU?

  1. 0
    I have 3 years of ICU experience, but I've been out of the field for 10 years. I'm interested in returning to critical care, but the ICU I went into as a new grad was a mix of SICU, MICU, and post-CABG patients. So what is it that CVICU nurses do? Is this a unit that takes care of immediate post-CABG patients? Is this where acute MI's are sent? The job descriptions that I am looking at are just boiler-plate general nursing specs, nothing about what makes working in the CVICU special. Could someone help me out?
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  5. 2
    You probably need to ask the unit where you plan to interview. In my CVICU, we recover heart patients (CABGs, Valves, etc). We also recover and care for heart and lung transplants, ECMO patients, IABPs, and every kind of VAD under the sun. We also get every miscellaneous sick and nasty sick patient that the hospital can't figure out what to do with. It is very intense but it is a lot of fun. Hope that helps and good luck to you!
    kool-aide and BonewaxRN like this.
  6. 0
    Thanks everso, labcat. This would be at a small hospital, so there wouldn't be any transplants and I really doubt ECMO, but the rest of it sounds plausible. At least you have given me some insight, and it sounds like something that would be worth investigating.

    Thanks again!
  7. 0
    My hospital has both a CVICU and a CCU. Basically the CVICU takes care of the surgical patients (CABG's, valves, etc) and the CCU takes care of the medical patients (ends stage CHF, acute MI etc). If you're at a smaller hospital my guess would be that it's probably a combined medical/surgical unit.
  8. 0
    Thanks, tachy!


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