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freckles23 freckles23 (Member)

Which route to go?

Cardiac   (470 Views 2 Comments)
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I used to work on med surg/tele floor where we have the monitors at the nurses station and had techs to read the strips for us and we would take only cardizem drips. We also would take cardiac cath patients post op. Through this I had a liking to cardiac nursing. I switched jobs and now currently work on a telemetry floor. We take nitro, cardizem, milrinone drips, cardiac cath patients, and prep patients for CABGs. My unit is a tele unit connected to a stepdown unit so we share the nurses station with stepdown. I am trying to figure out what I want to do once I finish my Bachelors (2 more classes to go!). Do I attempt to work stepdown and get my CCRN? (I wonder if you get paid more with that certification). I might want to do CVICU but need more info on what it entails. What is the difference between CVICU and CCU? What direction did you go once you realized cardiac nursing is the route you want to go?

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CVICU is your post open hearts (Bypass, valves, aortic grafts, etc). CCU/CICU is still medically managed and minimally invasive pts (think drips, arrhythmias, post-cash STEMIs, balloon pumps, heart failure, etc).

It really depends what you are interested in. Do you like the current pt population on your floor? Go CCU/CICU. If you want to learn a different area of cardiac nursing go to CVICU. Either way, make sure you shadow a RN on each floor.

Also, I would wait for your CCRN until you actually get into an ICU. If you are on a step-down get your PCCN. 

I started off on a cardiac step-down like yours. I originally wanted to move on to CICU or CVICU but ultimately Im trying to go in the direction of outpatient or a procedural area. 

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