Getting to Intubate a Patient in CRNA School

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CRNA School Admissions


After Getting Into CRNA School

When you first gain admission into CRNA school the only thing you can think about is intubating your first patient. This is pretty much on every student’s mind, so when the time comes you will definitely be nervous. I was at a anesthesia program that was front-loaded, so the whole first year was just classroom work. We did not get to see an actual patient until clinical started a year later. It is very hard going from working full time in the ICU taking care of patients day-to-day to just sitting in a classroom with no hands-on training. Once a week we did get to practice skills in the simulation lab to help prepare us for when the clinical portion of the CRNA program started. This is where we got to practice placing epidurals, spinal’s, intubating patients, and other clinical skills that we needed later on. Needless to say I was counting down the days until I could get back into a hospital and start practicing the anesthesia skills that I had learned.

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CRNA School Clinicals are Finally Here!!!

So I finally got to start the clinical portion of CRNA school, and this was by far the most exciting part yet. On my first day of clinical I woke up extra early. I wanted to make sure that I got to the hospital with plenty of time to figure out what surgical case I was on, set up my room, and preop my patient. I even had a little extra time to grab breakfast and drink a cup of coffee. Finally I hear them page me and the CRNA to the holding area, so we headed over there to start bringing the patient back to the room. By this time my heart was racing, because I was about to do my first case in CRNA school. We then get the patient into the OR, I connected them to the monitors, placed him on oxygen, and grabbed my induction medications. After the CRNA said it was okay, I started giving the drugs and right away the patient was asleep. I reached over to grab my laryngoscope, and I kept thinking to myself “this is it there is no backing out now!”

I still remember when I first job shadowed a CRNA, while I was trying to gain admission into CRNA school. He made it look so easy, and I kept wondering if I would ever get that good. Now it was my turn, and trust me I was nervous! I gently opened the patient’s mouth and began to do my laryngoscopy. I realized very quickly that this was a lot different than practicing in CRNA school on a dummy in the simulation lab. The patient’s anatomy looks completely different and can vary from patient to patient. The patient I was taking care of today luckily was very healthy, not obese, and a fairly easy intubation. I could clearly see the vocal cords, and my heart about pounding out of my chest because. I knew there was a good chance I would be successful. The CRNA handed me the ET tube, and I proceeded to place it through the vocal cords. I inflated the cuff, connected the ET tube to the circuit, and began to check for end tidal CO2. The CO2 waveform was the most beautiful site I had ever seen! This meant that I had successfully intubated my very first patient!

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The Rest of My Day

I ended up doing two more cases that day. The second one went a lot like the first one and wasn’t too difficult, however the third case was a totally different story. I wasn’t able to get that intubation because the patient was very obese, had a short neck, and a very small mouth opening. I didn’t feel too bad, because the CRNA said even he would have had a little trouble with this patient. Overall… I think the first day of clinical in CRNA school was a success. As I was walking to my car I had a smile on my face, because I knew I was doing something that I loved! I couldn’t imagine choosing any other career, and I knew I was exactly where I was supposed to be.

Stay tuned for more of my student blogs. I have a lot experiences that I think you will be interested to read about. I plan on writing about taking call as a student, placing my first epidural, arterial line placement, and much much more. I hope you enjoyed my blog post, and I wish anyone wanting to get into CRNA school the best of luck!

P. Miller RRNA
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CRNA School Admissions

Getting into CRNA school is an amazing feeling! If you are interested in becoming Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist, and want help with the application process, please check “CRNA School Admissions: The Cold Hard Facts”. Our CRNAs will show you how to tackle the application process without wasting a bunch of time on things that won’t help you get into nurse anesthesia school. You will be shown how to create a professional resume, write personal essays, choose a CRNA school, and outperform other applicants during the CRNA school interview. If you are preparing for an upcoming interview, please feel free to take our Free Interview Practice Test, which includes real questions from a actual CRNA school interviews. You can also find more tips and strategies in the student blog section of our website. If you have any other questions please feel free to contact us.

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