Your first year as a registered nurse is challenging. This podcast is hosted by Kati Kleber, BSN RN CCRN and Elizabeth Mills, BSN RN CCRN and features experienced nurses from FreshRN.com, who discuss the basics of that first year. From nursing orientation, code blues, tricks of the trade, and personal experiences, to time management, delegation, patient deaths, and more.
Download the Season 3, Episode 001 show notes or view them below
Top Tips for Cardiac Nurses. An Interview with Nurse Nacole
In this interview, we interviewed Nurse Nacole about tips for cardiac nurses. Nacole is a certified critical care nurse who is currently pursuing her Doctorate of Nursing Practice. Check out her website here.
A few important points
If you are a new grad that is not taking accountability for his or her learning and mistakes, it is a huge red flag.
If you want to learn more about something, you’ll have to do that at home – many times there isn’t enough time to do that while providing care at the same time
First things a new nurse should understand about cardiac
- First focus on understanding the the anatomy of the heart
- NCLEX® Cardiac Essentials – course
- Second, focus on the ECG interpretation
- Focus on the patient – not the monitor
- The patients don’t always present like the textbook
Things to know
- Cardiac history / procedures
- Parameters can be different depending on the different surgeries, procedures, or history
- Know parameters!
- Look at nursing orders before calling / treating
- Potassium lab is a big focus for cardiac surgeons and cardiologist
- Very diligent and proactive to supplement potassium
- Your body doesn’t hang on to potassium if your magnesium is low. If you have to replace both, replace magnesium first then do your potassium.
- Magnesium doesn’t come on a BMP; you’ll have to add that on if the MD wants it or you’re concerned about ectopy.
- Vitals / monitor changes first, then it’s evident in the assessment
- Know your patient’s trends because even though they may be in technically “in range” it may be abnormally high or low for that unique person
- Some people will not be concerned by alarms that stop or don’t continue; it is essential to see what caused the alarm
- Was it a run of PVC’s? How many runs have they been having?
- Was it a pause? How long was the pause?
- EKG Dance Video
- Know your orders
- If something changed, it’s not your job to interpret the EKG perfectly on an instant – but know when something changes and get a 12-lead if you’ve got an order to do so
- Many times there’s a standing order to get an 12-lead with telemetry changes
- When to freak out/intervene?
- When they’re symptomatic, even if the vitals are okay
- Persistent issues like increasing runs PVC’s
- Lung vs. cardiac
- Use an ABG to differentiate
More Tips for Cardiac Nurses:
NRSNG also has quite a few great resources for nursing students and new nurses. There are various courses, or the entire academy. The specific courses that would give valuable tips for cardiac nurses include:
12 Lead EKG for Nurses: Simple Steps to Interpret Rhythms, Arrhythmias, Blocks, Hypertrophy, Infarcts, & Cardiac DrugsMens Nurse Heartbeat Shirt Nursing Passionate Jobs Heart Beat Tee Large Heather BlueHeart Attack, Cardiac Cath, & Bypass: A Nurse’s Guide to Caring for the PatientCardiac Rhythm Compression Socks 20-30mmHg (Small/Medium)Cardiac/Vascular Nurse Exam Secrets Study Guide: Cardiac/Vascular Nurse Test Review for the Cardiac/Vascular Nurse Exam