Perianesthesia Nurse – Career and Education Profile

Perianesthesia nursing is an important field, as these nurses care for patients after they come out of surgery until they wake up.

Job Responsibilities

If you go through a operations, an anesthesia team will work with your doctors to safely administer anesthesia so you are unconscious during the surgery. Afterward, most patients slowly and calmly wake up, but occasionally patients burst awake in an excitable state, feel sick, have problems breathing, or others have difficulties during the hours after being in the operating room. Perianesthesia nurses work with these patients to ensure that they are as safe as possible, no matter what situations might complicate the waking process. As a perianesthesia nurse, you could also be tasked with preparing a patient for the anesthesia process, both by physically preppring the patient and by educating the patient so he or she knows what to expect.

Salary and Career Options

Nurses in this field generally make around $50,000, but your salary will depend on factors such as location and your education level. Once you gain experience as a perianesthesia nurse, you could consider becoming a nurse anesthetist or anesthetist, and many perianesthesia nurses also have experience in critical care or surgical nursing.

Educational Requirements

To work in the field of perianesthesia, you need to be certified as an RN, which requires at least an associate’s degree in nursing. Employers generally do not hire LPNs in this field, though LPN-to-BSN programs allows you to earn an associate’s degree fairly quickly. Many opt to get a bachelor’s degree or master’s degree, which allows you to take advanced classes, as well as classes specializing in anesthesia. After graduation, you can seek certification in this field from the American Board of Perianesthesia Nursing, which requires you to pass an exam and complete at least 1800 hours working as a perianesthesia nurse.


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