Cardiac to L&D


I have been working in a CV surgery step-down unit since I graduated about 1 1/2 years ago. I love my job, but there was an opening in L&D at my hospital. I applied and got the job (not too many openings ever pop up -- this one was because the unit got more $$ for 2 more nurses).

Like I said, I love my job, but have always wanted to be an L&D nurse. I kind of put it on the very back burner because my current unit is great--great teamwork, supportive management, interesting work, and heart surgery patients that I enjoy watching get better. I feel like I've learned so much--certainly there's so much more.

Am I nuts to leave a job I like? I'm 37, and didn't want to find myself five years down the road wishing I had given it a try. I really love that there are so many different things going on in L&D.

I start Monday! Any advice would be greatly welcome!


SICU Queen

1 Article; 543 Posts

Specializes in SICU. Has 16 years experience.

Go, and don't look back.

I left the SICU a few years ago for a position on L&D. They gave me a very lengthy orientation and I LOVED it there. I personally was a bit uncomfortable because I was going from being very experienced to almost like a new grad, but I've always felt that nervousness can be a good thing: it makes you look twice at what you're doing, you know?

Anyway... I stayed in that position for 6 months and had to leave the hospital due to my impending divorce (he's a nurse too and the hospital wasn't big enough for the both of us, hehe), and due to my limited L & D experience, I couldn't use it to take a travel position, and so I wound up back in ICU nursing. I very much miss L & D and have looked in vain for another position that would take me as a newbie, and either the money's not good, or they want experience (of which I don't have enough).

Again, please do go for it and don't look back. Embrace your new position and educate yourself as much as possible, and be determined to become as much of an expert as you can be. L & D is very different from cardiac, but it's a good different. I suspect you'll be very glad you made the change.

Good luck to you!


110 Posts

I had the exact same job you do when I started nursing. I loved cardiac, but I went to OB after 2 years and have done OB for 10 years now. Go for it! If it is not a good fit, you can always go back. I stayed prn on my cardiac unit just in case and only went back for 1 shift.


1,016 Posts

It 's cool to hear that nurses do these big switches. I want to get my med surg type experience, or telemetry, or whatever, but there just seems like something so fun about L&D that I don't want to miss. I dont' want to start there, but I'd like to go there also one day and transition to lactation consulting ... but I also like hearts and all that other stuff as well. Thanks for the encouragement.


141 Posts

Specializes in Nurse Educator; Family Nursing.

Good luck, I believe you will like the change of pace and with a background in a cardiac step down unit, you already are familiar with monitors and equipment that you will use (although differently).

That's one of the beautiful things about nursing. If you "tire" of one set of activities, you just move laterally and find that there are more similarities than differences in various specialties.

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