What do surgical nurses do?

  1. I have never-worked in med surg and am just wondering what is a typical day for nurses who work on a surgical unit? Are you caring for the patients pre-op or post-op or both? Would surgical nursing be a good start to branch off into other areas such as critical care or ED?

  2. Visit LeLeeFNP profile page

    About LeLeeFNP

    Joined: Sep '09; Posts: 231; Likes: 57
    Nurse Practitioner; from US
    Specialty: 6 year(s) of experience in ICU, CVICU, Surgical, LTAC


  3. by   nurseme3
    I am working on a surgical floor ("general surgical-telemetry"). On most surgical floors, you generally care for patients post-op (from the PACU) or post-op (admitted through the ED with a complication from a recent surgery). Occasional surgeries require pts to be hospitalized the night before surgery to administer certain meds, and they can reside on your floor too.

    You do typical nursing stuff but you see a lot more tubes (NGs, JTs, chest tubes), drains and wound vacs, and dressing changes than a typical medical floor. You spend a lot of time dealing with pain management (PCAs, scheduled morphine/diluadid, etc). Overall, it is a good place to start because problems pts have are often similar after surgery (dehydration, bleeding wounds, collapsed lungs, etc). Hope this helps, PM with questions.
  4. by   LeLeeFNP
    this is very helpful. Thank you so much!