If you became CRNA for the money did you end up......

  1. End up loving it?

    I'm strongly considering CRNA school for many reasons but primarily the salary. My opinion toward anesthesia right now is that it's not a passion or anything, I don't love it, I don't hate it, I'm very content/neutral toward it. This is holding back my decision to move forward because the schooling is so intense. Is there anyone that initially felt the same way as me but ended up falling in love with it? Anyone feel the same as me and regret pursuing CRNA?
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  2. 34 Comments

  3. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from paramedic-RN
    End up loving it?

    I'm strongly considering CRNA school for many reasons but primarily the salary. My opinion toward anesthesia right now is that it's not a passion or anything, I don't love it, I don't hate it, I'm very content/neutral toward it. This is holding back my decision to move forward because the schooling is so intense. Is there anyone that initially felt the same way as me but ended up falling in love with it? Anyone feel the same as me and regret pursuing CRNA?
    I've never been interested in anesthesia, so perhaps I'm not the one who should be answering. My ex-husband went into it primarily for the money (and the prestige) and ended up hating it. I've known quite a few people who went the CRNA route and loved it, but they were all people who were fascinated with anesthesia and the OR environment before going to anesthesia school. A close friend became a nurse practitioner primarily because of the salary, and she ended up regretting her choice in a big way. Then again, I've had friends and colleagues who pursued NP school because they had researched the role and wanted the change in role. MOST of them are happy with their choice, but a few aren't. I guess the takeaway (for me, anyway) is don't spend the time, energy and money on advanced degrees unless you're excited about the change in role and the particular area of study.
  4. by   paramedic-RN
    Thanks Ruby Vee, I really appreciate the input. I'm at a crossroads right now with this and am trying to make a decision soon before all the applications are due for next year.
  5. by   Bluebolt
    Ruby Vee did a good job summing up where your head should be at. As a student in the middle of the apocalypse that is called CRNA school, I'll give you my best tip. Don't go into anesthesia unless you are absolutely positive that you love it and want it to be your entire existence for the next few years, then spend your whole career married to it.

    At this point being one year in and two more years to go I can't tell you how many times I've left lecture, went home and laid on the couch and decided I wanted to quit school. I decide I'm going to turn off my phone, move to Belize and live off the land if that means I didn't have to study one more Pka of local anesthetics or the pathophysiology of Hemophilia A and anesthetic implications. I've always been an above average student who never had to study much, in school your entire life is studying, there is nothing else, you are nothing else. Three people who were bright enough to get admitted have already fatigued out and failed, they are now about $60,000 in debt with no advanced degree to pay that back.

    CRNA school is a $100,000 to $200,000 mistake to make if you aren't absolutely sure you're ready to enter the ring. For 10 years I've wanted to be nothing but a CRNA and have prepared myself for it and even I sometimes drive past the farmer on the tractor and I wonder if I could swap roles, just so I don't have to study. one. more. thing. (I write this while on a quick study break so it may come across raw).
  6. by   paramedic-RN
    Hey Bluebolt!

    I actually saw you on you tube recently (before this post) when I was researching CRNA stuff, love your channel by the way. Anyway thanks for taking the time to respond to my post, I really appreciate everyone's input. One thing I'm struggling with is before I went to nursing school I felt the same about nursing like very content/neutral but did it anyway and I'm glad I did, it was a great decision. So I keep wondering well CRNA would probably be the same, I would probably come out in the end saying I didn't want to to do that but I"m glad I did. But then again from what I hear CRNA is a totally different ballgame so maybe not. Also I had many reasons to go into nursing beside just the money. With CRNA I think money is the overwhelming factor more then I wanna admit to myself. Anyway thanks again for the reply.
  7. by   Bluebolt
    Quote from paramedic-RN
    Hey Bluebolt!

    I actually saw you on you tube recently (before this post) when I was researching CRNA stuff, love your channel by the way. Anyway thanks for taking the time to respond to my post, I really appreciate everyone's input. One thing I'm struggling with is before I went to nursing school I felt the same about nursing like very content/neutral but did it anyway and I'm glad I did, it was a great decision. So I keep wondering well CRNA would probably be the same, I would probably come out in the end saying I didn't want to to do that but I"m glad I did. But then again from what I hear CRNA is a totally different ballgame so maybe not. Also I had many reasons to go into nursing beside just the money. With CRNA I think money is the overwhelming factor more then I wanna admit to myself. Anyway thanks again for the reply.
    Trust me, I breezed through my BSN with very minimal studying, worked a full time job, played my Xbox, went out with friends. CRNA school is not even in the same solar system, especially with the DNP requirement and all the extra research and papers on top of the hard sciences.
  8. by   offlabel
    I don't fit into that category, and please don't think I'm trying to be a tool, because I'm not. That said, I know plenty of CRNA's that did go into it just for the money and they're to a person lousy clinicians, the biggest whiners and the surgeons can't stand them. And they don't last very long at all at my place.

    Save yourself and everyone else around you all kinds of time, trouble and money and do something else. You'll thank me later.
  9. by   paramedic-RN
    Thanks for the reply off label. I just want to clarify something I'm confused about in your response so I can understand it better. When you said "I don't fit into that category" what are you referring to?
  10. by   paramedic-RN
    Yea Bluebolt that's what I've been hearing, good to know.
  11. by   tvtom
    I started anesthesia school in 2010, been out now for about 5 years (MSN not DNP) and I've got to say I agree with Bluebolt, that it is very difficult, and found myself wanting to quit occasionally during school. Like you I was not super psyched about anesthesia before the program, but the money sounded nice, and I've got to say that I wouldn't want to be doing anything else. Of course I also joined the Army so that they would send me to school, so no student loans, and I was paid while in school, but of course that adds a whole other set of issues to your schooling.
    If you're unsure what to do, look up your closest program and ask to shadow a student for a few days, see what their life is like before you make the decision.
  12. by   Wolf at the Door
    Quote from paramedic-RN
    End up loving it?

    I'm strongly considering CRNA school for many reasons but primarily the salary. My opinion toward anesthesia right now is that it's not a passion or anything, I don't love it, I don't hate it, I'm very content/neutral toward it. This is holding back my decision to move forward because the schooling is so intense. Is there anyone that initially felt the same way as me but ended up falling in love with it? Anyone feel the same as me and regret pursuing CRNA?
    I think you would have a tough time trying to do a program that you have zero passion for. If you are highly motivated by money and if that is all the motivation you need go, for it. I am motivated by money but, can't do something I have zero passion for at this time.
  13. by   PresG33
    The other factor is that, although the starting salary is nice, it isn't like CRNAs are getting rich. Most get out of school with at least 100,000 in loans, and, when you factor in not working for 2-3 years while in school, there is at least another 100,000 in lost income. Before I went to CRNA school I ran some numbers and I figure it will take me 5 years of working as a CRNA to "break even" from the school debt and lost income and actually start making money. If all you want to do is make money there are other careers (computers, business) that make much more. The CRNAs I know aren't driving Tesla's and living in mansions, they are comfortable and upper middle class but I wouldn't call them "rich". For me personally, I can't imagine being anything other than a CRNA which, as has been mentioned, is what keeps me going through the slog of school.
  14. by   Julius Seizure
    A friend of mine went to CRNA school, mostly just for bigger opportunities/salary, not because of a burning love for anesthesia. Shes told me that she regrets doing it. By the end of the program, she was so depressed that I barely recognized the girl that I once knew. She has now been a practicing CRNA for a little over one year, and while the depression is slightly better, shes still not nearly as happy as she used to be

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