I worked in IR as a RN, now I work in general surgery as a NP. We had a NP and PA in IR, who, quite honestly, did 80% of the procedures in any given day. The procedures which they did perform, were performed without direct oversight - the physician just had to be available.
The procedures that they were able to do included:
- Paracentesis/Thoracentesis +/- pigtail or tunneled drain
- Implanted ports, tunneled dialysis catheters, hickman catheters, non-tunneled central line insertions, PICCs
- Epidural steroid injections, nerve root injections, other joints injections (shoulder, hip, knee, CMC, SI, AC, etc)
- Liver biopsy, solid mass biopsy (superficial), lymph node biopsy
- Superficial abscess drains requiring only US
- Tube checks and changes (nephrostomy, feeding tubes, etc)
The physicians exclusively do:
- All angiographies +/- intervention
- Lung biopsies and renal biopsies
- Biliary and chole drains
- Deep abscess drains requiring CT
- Kyphoplasty and ablations
- Tube insertions (nephrostomy, perc G-Tube, etc)
These are the bread and butter cases we do on a day to day basis - and the procedures the APPs were able to do were by far the majority of procedures done on a day to day basis. They had a lot of autonomy. I wouldn't mind making a switch at some point to IR. And I probably wouldn't recommend going straight into IR as a new grad NP. You need to learn medical management, and, to be frank, there is little to no medical management in IR.