Have some concerns, please help me out

  1. I'm finishing high school & just have some concerns about becoming a CRNA.

    Please, I'm just in the research phase right now & you have to start some where.

    I've looked on here for answers & found SOME of what I need but not exactly what I wanted to know and I find it easier one on one asking.

    I know it's very dangerous, don't get me wrong about that but does the nervousness ever go away? Are you constantly paranoid you're going to kill or paralyze somebody?

    I know you're super busy but does the actual task of putting a needle in somebodies spine ever get easier and routine?

    Do you have any horror stories about being on the job or messing up?

    Like what are the chances of me screwing up atleast once or more my entire career? As far as SERIOUS screw ups go is what I mean.

    Last question... Do you need to get accepted to University or is it possible to do this from College and if so, is it the same? Same salary, same opportunities?

    I would really appreciate it if anybody experienced could give me some advice on all of this as I'm finding it tough to get certain answers

    Like when I ask how long it will take and some people say 3-4... then others say 3-4 after 6 years of doing "this" ....HOW LONG FROM START TO FINISH!

    Thank you very much for your time as well.
    Last edit by DSparky on Oct 25, '16
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    About DSparky

    Joined: Oct '16; Posts: 1


  3. by   sigiris
    Ok, so you want to be a nurse? Yes, please check out the pre-nursing forum. Do well on your ACT/SAT to get into college...right. Ok...do well on pre-req's math, science (bio, chem, A&Ps), get your CNA and work in an ICU (actually do this first so the hospital can pay for your education!). As you do your pre-req's you can learn from the ICU nurses and prepare yourself to be an ICU nurse. To answer many of your "questions" as you gain experience, you will learn to be safe, "needles in spines” will come in CRNA School. You will start by wiping rear-ends, then as a RN collecting stool samples, urine samples, drawing blood for labs and starting IVs!
    How long it will take will be up to you; Start with your ADN ~1 or 2 years gen ed/pre-req’s(while you are working as a CNA) get into nursing school 2years (5 semesters for me-one summer), get RN position in ICU or more likely step-down unit, work ICU while you apply to BSN bridge program (again paid by your employer) get CCRN and apply to CRNA school or work step-down one year then ICU at least one year then apply to school. Or, you could choose to do a “traditional” BSN four year program, then get your ICU experience/CCRN and apply to school. CRNA school currently requires 28 months of school (most do not allow concurrent work as an RN) and will soon be moving to a doctoral degree, so to answer your question “how long will It take” probably a minimum of 6 years until you are ready to APPLY for CRNA school.
    All the best
    Last edit by sigiris on Oct 31, '16
  4. by   NYNewGradNurse
    So this is posted in a student forum (SRNA, student registered nurse anesthetist). For specifics about being a CRNA, you can look at the CRNA forum; there are a lot of great posts already on there answering some of the questions you asked about stress.

    Just to clarify, CRNA is a graduate degree, meaning you first have to have a Bachelors. As of right now it can be a masters degree but by 2020 all the schools will require it to be a doctorate. It isn't something you can do right out of high school.

    Here is the timeline:

    Bachelors in Nursing: 4 years
    ICU experience as an RN: 1 year required to apply for CRNA school (typically 2-5 because it just takes that long to get the experience, CCRN certification, and all your ducks in a row)
    CRNA School: 3 years minimum for your doctorate (since you are in high school now, you won't have the masters option which is 2 years minimum)
    So start to finish from high school is at least 8 years. When you've heard shorter timelines, they are referring to people who already have their bachelors. Most people don't start thinking about CRNA out of high school.

    Remember that during this time you will graduate as an RN, have a great career as an RN and have other opportunities such as nurse practitioner if you decide CRNA is not for you.

    As for the job/stress questions you asked, I am an ICU RN applying to CRNA school so I can't speak for CRNAs. As an ICU RN, I can say that yes, it is very stressful but yes, it does get better. The more experience and confidence you gain, the better and more routine everything gets. Some of us actually enjoy the pressure and the stress at times. When you are properly trained, it can be very exciting to have a patient crashing and be able to make a difference in their lives. That all comes with time though. Also, all CRNAs I have worked with say that 99% of the time, their job is far less stressful than when they were an ICU RN.

    You're young and have no education in healthcare right now and no experience so of course it is all going to sound super crazy and stressful right now, but once you have a strong education and quality training, you absolutely can be comfortable. The job is certainly not for everyone but it is really hard to tell who will love it and who will not be able to overcome the pressure without having some experience. If you absolutely love healthcare and want to be on the front lines, I think you should go for it. A majority of the people who go for it, can handle it and actually find the pressure to be exciting.

    Overall just remember that you are soooo far away from even applying to CRNA school (at least 5 years) so don't focus too much on deciding the rest of your life right now. Do you want to be a nurse? Do you want a career in healthcare? Why CRNA? I'm just curious why you're thinking about graduate school when you haven't finished college. You have a lot of time before you have to make any decisions about even your major.
  5. by   Buyer beware
    I had to chuckle when you sort of qualified "screw ups" in terms of "seriously serious" screwups.
    Even with your present layman's knowledge, I think you gave a good example of one though.
    Your reference to sticking a needle into someone's spine and paralyzing them would probably qualify.
    But you know Sparky, on second thought, maybe not so much "seriously serious", just "serious", as long as you get the nurse to first have the anesthesia consent signed.
    But don't worry. This stiff you'll learn on the job later on. So don't worry yet.
    Carry on, Sparkster.