What is it really like?

  1. Hello all,
    I am a senior in nursing school and will graduate in May 08. Ever since I decided to change my major to nursing, all thru prereqs, application process, and nursing school so far, my ultimate goal has been to become a CRNA. I am one of those people who, if there is a "hardest path" or a challenge, I have to go for it. I have always been fascinated by the nervous system and anesthesia. I also desire the respect and autonomy of a CRNA. The salary doesn't hurt either.

    Here's my question: Is it boring? During my 2 rotations thru the OR, I have observed the anesthesia process. The first time, I thought it was awesome....seeing all the cool surgeries, the intense responsibility, etc. The second time, I started questioning whether it would hold my attention. I know that I should shadow a CRNA to see for myself, and I do plan to do this, but wondering what others thought about this. Any CRNA's or SRNA's that can give me some insight?

    I talked to my hubby about this. Of course, he says that for the salary CRNA's earn, I can stand to be bored. HAHA! I somewhat agree. After all, the lifestyle it would afford would allow me to find interesting activities outside of work. What do ya'll think??
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  2. 8 Comments

  3. by   jla623
    I'm not sure, but I'm waiting for an answer on this too because I am very interested in this as well!
  4. by   Dixielee
    I am not a CRNA, so you may find my answer completely useless, and may certainly disregard it as such, but...I have been an RN for 34 years and have always worked in high acquity areas such as ICU, ER with a few years of PACU thrown in for good measure.

    Before you go to CRNA school you will be required to work several years in ICU learning not only patient care and assessment skills but how to manage arterial lines, Swan-ganz catheters, ventilators and airway management, balloon pumps and any number of the vast choices of invasive lines and procedures.

    In all my years of nursing, I have never been bored. I have been terrified, frustrated, anxious and furious, but I have never been bored.

    When you have a vulnerable person who is completely at your mercy, someone who can not even manage the very basics of life, their own airway, you have a tremendous responsibility, one that should keep you on your toes. If it ever gets so routine that you are bored with that, you need to find another job. If I am undergoing surgery and anesthesia, I want someone who is diligent, pays very close attention to detail, and whose only care and responsibility is that I continue to take regular breaths with adequate oxygenation.

    Does that sound like a job you would want? Do you think you would be bored with it? Only you can decide that. In the meantime, you need to concentrate on finishing nursing school and learning to be a nurse. It is not something you read in a cook book. It requires years of watching and caring for people, learning when to let something wait, and when to jump. Nursing is as much an art as it is a science. Take your time to do it well.
  5. by   nurseinlimbo
    In observing the anesthesiologists while I was taking my OR nursing course, their job is pretty routine, with the exception of emergencies and complications. Once the patient was out, alot of them read books, the paper, worked on a laptop, while sitting next to their monitors. I would think it would get boring after not to long....
  6. by   KsMICT
    "Once the patient was out, alot of them read books, the paper, worked on a laptop, while sitting next to their monitors."

    Wow. This makes anesthesia practice sound like an EXCELLENT way to make a living....especially if you want to get SUED and NO LONGER make a living practicing anesthesia.
  7. by   naturalgas
    Quote from Dixielee
    In the meantime, you need to concentrate on finishing nursing school and learning to be a nurse. It is not something you read in a cook book. It requires years of watching and caring for people, learning when to let something wait, and when to jump. Nursing is as much an art as it is a science. Take your time to do it well.
    Nice response! Everyone seems to want to jump into CRNA school right out of highschool and then ask if it is alright not to have any experience? They should ask themselves how they would feel if they were on the receiving side of the anesthesia given to them by a CRNA with inadequate practical experience; someone who learned everything by reading a few good cookbooks, as you would say. It brings to mind a movie Leonardo Dicaprio was in a few years ago "Catch Me If You Can", based on a true story. The main character, a master imposter was able to practice law, medicine, pilot airplanes, etc... by merely reading a few good books, quickly. I don't know if I would trust him to give good anesthesia, how about you?
  8. by   zrmorgan
    I suppose if you think driving a ferrari on a straight flat road at 160 mph for five hours is boring, or might not hold your attention, then it might not be for you.

    Or how about flying supersonic jet for a long trans-atlantic flight for the 100th time?

    Likewise, some anesthetics (hopefully most) can be very smooth, uneventful, and predictable. But the driver of the ferrari knows at any minute, if the tire blows catastrophic consequences may occur. Similarily, the jet pilot knows the weather can change at any minute, turning a smooth flight into a white knuckled tailspin at 7gs.

    So when someone asks me if I get bored because there is "nothing going on", I usually say no. It is the appreciation of what I am doing that keeps me entertained. And I don't take it for granted when things are nice and predictable, either.

    Hope this helps, good luck.
  9. by   DIGNOUT
    :smackingf Things not to say for 500, Alex.

    Not to single any one comment out, but here goes:

    1. One does not become a CRNA solely because of the income (shame, hubby, shame:trout. Income is a welcome side effect.

    2. One does not become a CRNA to see cool surgeries. Sure, it's a perk, but one is there to provide anesthesia and manage a complex series of needs.

    3. When one is reduced to being bored, it's time to find something else "neat" to do.

    4. One does not categorize a profession by poor examples set by other professional colleagues (i.e. MDs or CRNAs lounging on the job). There are bad examples everywhere; learn from them and learn not to be like them.

    :yeahthat:
  10. by   crna2bkristan
    Quote from DIGNOUT
    :smackingf Things not to say for 500, Alex.

    Not to single any one comment out, but here goes:

    1. One does not become a CRNA solely because of the income (shame, hubby, shame:trout. Income is a welcome side effect.

    2. One does not become a CRNA to see cool surgeries. Sure, it's a perk, but one is there to provide anesthesia and manage a complex series of needs.

    3. When one is reduced to being bored, it's time to find something else "neat" to do.

    4. One does not categorize a profession by poor examples set by other professional colleagues (i.e. MDs or CRNAs lounging on the job). There are bad examples everywhere; learn from them and learn not to be like them.

    :yeahthat:

    Well SAID!

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