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Do nurse anesthetists work very closely with anesthesiologists?

I am planning on being a nurse anesthetist. I would like to learn as much as I can about this job and maybe even get some experience to make sure it is what I want. #nurse #anesthetist

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Aijaz’s Answer

A nurse anesthetist is a registered nurse who works closely with doctors to administer and monitor a patient's anesthesia for medical procedures. If you enjoy helping people, have a keen eye for detail, and are interested in a demanding but rewarding career, you might consider becoming a nurse anesthetist. Schools offering Nursing degrees can also be found in these popular choices


A nurse anesthetist is an advanced practice nurse who specializes in administering anesthetics to patients and coordinating their care with other medical professionals. He or she may remain with a patient from pre-operative procedures through surgery and into recovery, ensuring that a patient is as safe and comfortable as possible. As a nurse anesthetist, you may work in several different medical settings, such as surgery clinics, dental clinics, or hospital operating rooms. As a result, the types of patients you care for might vary widely and include trauma victims, obstetrics patients, surgery patients, and patients managing chronic pain problems

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Kerrie’s Answer

Yes, certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs) provide anesthesia in collaboration with surgeons, dentists, podiatrists, physician anesthesiologists, and other qualified healthcare professionals. When anesthesia is administered by a nurse anesthetist, it is recognized as the practice of nursing; when administered by a physician anesthesiologist, it is recognized as the practice of medicine. Regardless of whether their educational background is in nursing or medicine, all anesthesia professionals give anesthesia the same way.

CRNAs practice in every setting in which anesthesia is delivered: traditional hospital surgical suites and obstetrical delivery rooms; critical access hospitals; and ambulatory surgical centers are the locations where CRNAs would most likely collaborate with an anesthesiologist for patient care.

A great resource for CRNAs is AANA.com
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Ryan’s Answer

Looking into a field of medicine before pursuing a degree is an excellent idea! There are many different paths you can take in medicine. It can be hard to decide so shadowing a few different specialities can be beneficial.

I am currently in CRNA school and will be graduating soon. CRNAs work in a variety of settings, both with and without anesthesiologists. Some CRNAs work independently while others work in a team. A lot of this depends on where you end of practice anesthesia and the setting. For example, at a large trauma facility, you are more likely to be working in a care team approach with an anesthesiologist. Or perhaps you will be practicing anesthesia in a rural town were you are the sole anesthesia provider.

Both are excellent options and I have been able to experience each as a student. I really enjoy working with anesthesiologists, but providing anesthesia independently is very satisfying. The good thing is you will always have options!

Ryan recommends the following next steps:

Shadow a CRNA
Shadow an Anesthesiologist
Look into the AANA website.
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