New ICU Nurse: Wanting helpful tips

Specialties MICU

Updated:   Published

Well hello everyone, I am new to the field of critical care. I am a new grad so I know pretty much minimum amount of knowledge only things we obtain in school. I have started a notebook at work of things I have learned and things that I have seen but won't see again for a bit and I write it down so I don't forget. I was wondering if anyone out there has some helpful tips for me to add to my book.

Examples are like Diprivan doesn't have any control on pain just a sedation method. Or for a hypotensive patient to put the HOB down, get fluid bolus if pt isn't CHF. Things like that. I am hoping to increase my knowledge as much as I can with this new opportunity of a job.

Thank you

Specializes in CVICU, CRNA.

I bought some books on Amazon that weren't that amazing but had some good basic information. Also check out

Quick reference to critical care

Critical care notes: clinical pocket guide

I want to buy:

House officers guide to ICU care

AACN essentials of critical care nursing (new edition coming out soon)

Manual of critical care nursing: nursing interventions and collaborative management

Specializes in CVICU, CRNA.

Here are some attachments that may help you. I'll keep looking through my old notes, etc. This will be good for me too because I am starting ICU in a couple of months.

ABG ebook.pdf


Specializes in ICU.

Great attitude, I love that you are going above and beyond to learn!

I would search the forum for CCRN review threads. While a lot of it may be over your head at this point, it will apply to you, and it's never too early to start prepping for your certification.

I'm sure that you are a member of AACN. That will plug you in to everything in the now/know. You are doing everything right so far. Experience and asking lots of questions of those you see as well as buying the books and reading......and tincture of time.......if you are near a teaching hospital.....grand rounds! usually get the free lunch too!!!!

Specializes in ER, ICU.

Whenever possible volunteer to assist or ask to just watch anything that you have no experience with yet on your unit when the opportunity arises. Nurses and doctors alike are more likely to share their knowledge if you show an initiative and eagerness to learn. Also never be afraid to say I'm not familiar with that and ask for help you will be trusted and respected if you do rather than trying to fake it through especially if you make a mistake. Which we all do at some point NO ONE is perfect.

Butterfly41 using

Specializes in Critical Care.

Keep a notepad with you at work. Anytime you question something or feel that you don't fully understand a concept, write it down and study it later. Unfortunately, in my case, I run into these questions at the worst times. For example, when I was new in the ICU, we had a patient whose temporary pacemaker wasn't working correctly. It so happened that I was the most experienced nurse working that night and I was clueless as to how to change the settings. The doctor on the phone angrily walked us through it, but I vowed to learn everything I could about pacemakers after that night.

Read the stuff over at index -- very helpful!

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