1. I was going to post under the ICU pages of the BB but didn't know where to go...CCU? SICU? MICU? So I'm resorting to the general thread....I know you're out there too.

    I'm going to try sitting for the CCRN exam. My facility does not pay for it or any CCUs, nor do they account for it in any way in evaluation or pay. But it's something I really want to do for MYSELF.

    I bought a review book...788 pages! It's very intimidating. I work in a community hospital ICU and we do little hemodynamic monitoring so I really need to brush up on it. I'm going to take a two-day review course in April. My goal is to take the test before I go on vacation in June.

    Words of advice? Please? I have to admit I'm scared of it. But I want to do it. I start reading that book, though, and get overwhelmed.
  2. Visit Zee_RN profile page

    About Zee_RN

    Joined: Oct '00; Posts: 1,664; Likes: 176
    RN, Inpatient Hospice; from US
    Specialty: 17 year(s) of experience in Hospice, Critical Care


  3. by   rstewart
    I don't have any words of advice. I do have words of praise and encouragement. I think it is a wonderful thing that you are doing for your patients, particularly in light of the lack of meaningful support from your facility.

    Remember that passing the examination would be wonderful---but striving to be the best nurse you can be is what counts.

    Frankly, I don't know how difficult the test is anymore (I took it years ago when it was still a rather long paper and pencil test offered only twice a year and I have since recerted through continuuing education.) At the time I thought it was quite demanding and I must admit I was quite proud when I found I had passed. In those days vent management and hemodynamics were a big deal and the test was graded in sections like hematology, cardiac etc. And many of the questions were more medical than nursing (questions that would give vent settings, lab and hemodynamic values etc with a scenerio and the question would be: You would expect the physician to next....and then you had choices.

    Anyway there was a book Case Studies in Critical Care Nursing edited by Barbara Clark Mims that struck me as very close to the type questions asked on the CCRN exam back then. Of course the AACN has guides/sample questions available. And I have heard the review by Laura Gasparis Vonfrolio is quite helpful.

    So...happy studying....and good luck to you.
  4. by   RNforLongTime
    I've been in Critical Care now for a year. I've grown so much in the past year. My facility pays nurses for the cost of taking the exam and once you reach a certain point in the career ladder then they pay a differential for CCRN cert. They don't however, pay for keeping up the CEU requirements to maintain certification.

    I bought Pass CCRN by Robin Dennison. Laura Gasparis is VERY good. My facility sponsored her for a CCRN review course this past December and all of my colleauges that went said she was wonderful. Good luck, Zee.
  5. by   Jenny P
    Zee, you can do it! I first became a CCRN in 1978 and have been a CCRN for the better part of that 25 years. You have the best motivation for taking the test -- doing it for yourself! That is the only reason I took the exam for so many different times; I have only recertified using CEUs for the past 2 times. My hospital has only recognized and paid extra for any certification for about 5 or 6 years now and that has increased the number of people interested in going for it.

    I don't know what book you have, but since you spent the $$$ on buying it; take a chapter a day and just read that chapter. Don't try to memorize it or anything; just read through it, then close the book each day and visualize what you read. A book is just a written bunch of information; it is up to you to use it in a way that you will benefit from it. After you have read the book or a series of chapters, then it is time to go back and study what you read. When I first took the test, I read Guyton's 2 volume Physiology book and also Harrison's Medical Diagnoses book. I don't even know if there was any CCRN study guides back then, although I would think there was at least one.

    Other posters have mentioned study guides in their posts, so I'd suggest that you follow their advice.

    Good luck! I know you can do it! We will expect ap thread saying you passed in about 3-4 months; okay?
  6. by   Chiaramonte
    Zee, I studied all summer with a question/answer review book. I learn better with that type of set up. All questions I studied and reasoned seem to have reappeared on my CCRN exam in some shape or manner.
    Was a lot of work but I am proud to say I passed quite well. Well worth the effort. On the Trauma/Neuro ICU I used to work, it was mandated that we pass it in 2 years from date of hire.
    Agree that Laura Gasparis tapes are beneficial also. If you get a chance to attend one of her CCRN reviews, she zeroes in on what is important.
    Good Luck and good studying!!!
    Critical Care Examination Review
    Laura Gasparis Vonfrolio, Joanne Noone :this is the title of the book I studied from.
    Last edit by Chiaramonte on Mar 19, '03
  7. by   lannae
    Zee, I sat for the CCRN last year in March 2002. It is 200 computerized questions. You can bookmark questions during the exam for review at the end. You have 4 hours to take the exam and will get your results after you finish. It is not as difficult as you would expect. I studied from PASS CCRN by Robin Donohoe Dennison the CDROM review question were very helpful. Review the book then take a practice exam they are retired question from old tests. Do not worry over missed questions. I did poorly on the practices but it focused my study. The current exam included Synergy Model. Review terms for this section it is really common sense to answer these question. I work with someone who recerts every year by taking the exam and she says the questions are not as hard as they used to be. Remember to relax you know more than you think. Hemodynamics are only a small fraction of the exam. I had worked in a ICU only 2 years when I sat for the exam and passed it the first time. :roll
  8. by   rstewart
    Questions not as hard as they used to be, you say?.....figures! I expected as much, a further dumbing down of nursing. As in the ACLS course which everyone passes. As in an exam for a professional license which can be passed by answering 75 multiple choice questions.

    Likewise, I am not surprised to learn that hemodynamics constitutes a small(er) part of the exam; I suspected as much when I noticed some of the relatively newly minted CCRNs did not have a working knowledge of the relationships between some of the more common measurements as those with that certification once had.
  9. by   moonshadeau
    Hi Zee,

    I took the CCRN last August. I studied like crazy. I actually bought three books and jumped from book to book. On there is the set of three for like 122 dollars. I used the CD rom, a computer disc and the three books. Also if you go under the questions from Linda V's book are right there under critical care.

    Yes, the test is very hard. I have to say that you have to be dedicated and have a good head on your shoulders to pass. And even Telemetry nurses can do it. Good luck.
  10. by   Zee_RN
    I bought the PASS CCRN! by Robin Dennison. I just opened the CD case and the CD is actually broken in half!!! I'm so disappointed; I'm not even sure I have the receipt! I'm going to call Mosby, the publisher, to see if they will replace it--I mean, it's not merely *defective*, it's broken in half! I was gonna see what I could answer just on my own.

    Thanks for your words of encouragement! I'm starting with Chapter 1 (duh!), cardiovascular. The book seems great; I like the tests at the end of each chapter. I just need to keep motivated!
  11. by   Jenny P
    Zee, you can do it! Like I said before, you are doing it for yourself and that is the best reason there is to take the test. If you want, we can be your cheering section here to help you stay motivated.