How to learn ACLS?

  1. I need to take an ACLS course for my position in the ICU & the facility offers two- one is a two day comprehensive course and the other is a refresher course for those who have been ACLS certified- well, obviously I registered for the first, and my supervisor says I cant go to the two day one, I have to take the one day class, even after I described to her that I was not certified already... So I'm kinda bummed because this is some really valuable information- I'm not familiar at all with rhythms, just the pretty textbook kind, which they rarely actually look just like- and I want to be useful & help save someone's life!
    So, I guess I'm partially on my own- do any of you have any good books on the subject you would recommend or any other study tips so I can be prepared in the event of my first code?
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    About DaughteroftheKing

    Joined: Feb '07; Posts: 215; Likes: 63
    Specialty: Neuro ICU


  3. by   DabearsDitka
    the AHA has a book that they usually give with the class, somtimes you have to pay 15-20 for it fromt he training facility. I'm sure you can do a google search and come up with info. I'd start with the American Heart Association website.
  4. by   LegzRN
    I'm pretty sure they'll send you packing once you show up without a prior ACLS card.
  5. by   Anna Flaxis
    I'm with Legz. I'm not sure how your supervisor can get away with this.
  6. by   PediNurse3
    For studying purposes, go over the algorithms and memorize them forwards and backwards .Know the important rhythms (shockable, non-shockable, fatal, a-fib, etc) and you should be good.

    I'm not really sure that they will certify in the re-cert class if you've never had ACLS before though...I would look into it before you waste your time.

    Good luck!
  7. by   DabearsDitka
    I'm an ACLS & BLS instructor. It is a myth that you have to take the 2 day course the first time, however is is highly advisable. I took the 2 day course when I first certed and again the 2 day for my renewal since my job would pay for it and I did not feel I knew the information well enough yet. But as stated by other some training centers will in fact not allow you to take the 1 recert class if not already in good standing
  8. by   DaughteroftheKing
    I HOPE they send me packing from the renewal course, I WANT every bit of info I can get!! I found the book but the 2011 edition is over $40 Oh well, I'll get it soon & start studying! Thanks everyone...
  9. by   MombearNurse
    I just took the ACLS prep class and it was worth every penny! On Thursday and Friday I will be taking the 2-day ACLS course. I think I'm actually beginning to understand the rhythms! I am nervous about the course coming up though, but especially since I paid for it myself (not having a job yet, after graduating in May) I will get as much out of it as possible.
  10. by   TinyRNgrl
    The class isn't bad at all. If you have a good instructor that reviews basic rhythm analysis and you follow the algorithms you will be fine. If you want to message me I would be more than happy to help you with any questions. I work ER and run quit a bit of codes. I would be happy to help ya out if I can.
  11. by   TinyRNgrl
    Also, the hospital where I work actually sent me to a basic dysrhythmia class and had a wonderful, very simple to understand booklet. I actually made a copy of it and sent it to a friend of mine who was entering her last year of nursing school where she would be learning ekg's and she said she would of never understood it otherwise since they briefly teach this stuff in school. I could send you a copy of it if your interested.
  12. by   TiredMedic
    I am suprised they are letting you take a refresher without taken the whole two day course. If we've been certified already and let it lapse for even one day, we have to take the whole course. You are just lucky I guess. Good luck. It's not like the old days of hard core mega code scenarios either. It's more of a learning process now. Once again, good luck, I'm sure you'll be fine.
  13. by   bahmadi
    Isn't ACLS Cert mandatory for your job? If so why is your employer not supplying you the book and course paid for by them?!? Also the one day course is for re-cert only so your manager is misinformed. You need the 2 day course. Stand up for yourself get informed
  14. by   DaughteroftheKing
    I did Got the two day class woohoo!