CRNA in trauma

Specialties CRNA


Can anyone give me some info on the role that a CRNA might play in a Trauma Team setting? I know that at MD Shock Trauma, there is a Trauma Anesthesiology Dept and (according to their web site) they employ CRNAs. Anyone have any experience with this? I know at the Level I center where I used to work anesthesia residents/attendings (MDAs) came to the ED for Alerts (prep for the OR/airway management). Is this true for CRNAs as well? My big concern about being a CRNA is that I'd get stuck doing the small, boring stuff while the MDs handled anything big. Is this the case?


457 Posts

My big concern about being a CRNA is that I'd get stuck doing the small, boring stuff while the MDs handled anything big. Is this the case?

depends on the group or hospital or solo practice you are in.

some groups dont let CRNA do regional (mda + crna), some groups dont let crna's push their own drugs sometimes.

if you work in a crna only practice...well there ya go.

and again if you are in solo practice noone tells you what to do.

if it's md shock trauma, well i would think that even if they did employ crna's it would be with the ACT (anesthesia care team) medically directed model. so it could really go either way. i would guess md's take the more "exciting" cases and dish the rest out.



502 Posts

When I was an SRNA at Med Coll of VA, we went to MD Shock Trauma in Baltimore for two 2 week rotations. I have to say, the CRNAs did everything there, including the admit bay, major cases, regional and lines. That was in 1992-93 and I'm not sure if it has changed since than. I enjoyed my time there but found doing all trauma fairly boring after awhile and could not see doing it all the time. During the daytime at ST, they did alot of orthopedic reconstruction surgeries, back surgeries and ENT, Facial and plastics work. During the night it was mainly emergent trauma that came from the streets. Hope this helps. It really depends on the hospital system you are in when it comes to what you can do as a CRNA.



1,093 Posts

they are actually hiring...i saw it today - but they are paying pennies.


31 Posts

I actually just transferred from there (MD Shock Trauma-IMC) to the SICU all under the University of Maryland Medical System. From what i gather, the CRNA's do quite a bit. I speak to them on the regular basis and they're telling me they are doing pretty big cases as well as placing lines. They often come to my unit (SICU) and pick pt's up for OR. Most of these patients are going for Open bellies( expl laps), backs, ortho,vascular, thoracic,etc. The CRNA team there is growing pretty quickly. New faces all the time.

Hope this helps :rotfl:


567 Posts

I just spent a month there, and can confirm that the CRNAs do everything and more. Everyone is treated as a member of the team. I unfortunately for me and fortunate for the patients brought my white cloud to the month of August. In my first two weeks, I did five general cases, and three tru admits. It was a shockingly slow two weeks.

I had a good time, except when the EMT from PG dropped the E cylinder on my foot. I am lucky it didn't break my foot.

The one big problem with working at Shock trauma that I can see is the shear number of trainees there. You may be able to do all the aformentioned procedures, but there will always be a long line ahead of you waiting to do the procedure for you. I actually had a hard time getting TRU admit intubations due to the constant presence of ER residents on their Airway rotation. I am sure this type of thing happens all the time in teaching institutions.

anyway, good luck.


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