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How well do nurses need to know anatomy?


On a scale of 1-10, how well should a nurse know anatomy? How often is it used in daily work? and also, what points of anatomy should nursing student focus most on?

Well, if this is for a prereq Anatomy class, I'm guessing you'd want to know it pretty well so that you can get into your nursing program. ;)

Since you are working with people's bodies, anatomy is key. Now, you may not remember every single detail once you actually become a nurse. For example, you probably won't remember every single suture or crevice of the skull (I can't remember a day when I needed to know the lacrimal fossa or the lambdoid suture). However you should know all the major bones, muscles and organs. Right now, focus on the study guide to get you through the test and once you become a nurse, then it will become apparent in whatever area you go into which aspects of anatomy to focus on and which aren't as important to your practice.

~Mi Vida Loca~RN, ASN, RN

Specializes in Emergency Dept. Trauma. Pediatrics. Has 6 years experience.

As long as you know where the rectum is you should be fine. As nurses we usually just focus on wiping rear ends from my understanding. :)

mmc51264, ADN, BSN, MSN, RN

Specializes in orthopedic; Informatics, diabetes. Has 9 years experience.

BLADDERS!!!! We get patients from the PACU and we have a protocol for urinary retention. Please learn that the bladder is NOT near your belly button. We have had pts where the nurse swears she bladder scanned 200mL and then when they get to our unit and we scan them, the pt asks "why are you scanning me way down there" and they have 900 mL in their bladders. smh

How well do you need to know anatomy? Is this real? What do you think a nurse does exactly?

It's kind of important. You kind of need to know what those body parts are called and where they are located in order to treat them.