Nurse Anesthetist

Manage patients undergoing anesthesia.

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$44,000 – $95,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Nurse Anesthetists do?

As a Nurse Anesthetist you are a specially trained Registered Nurse who administers anesthesia to patients. There are a variety of fields you can do this in; not just in an operating room – though that is the most common. As a Nurse Anesthetist, you may end up working in an emergency room, a dental office, or any other facility that is home to procedures where anesthesia may be necessary.

You work on a team of Physicians and other Nurses, usually under the direction of a Surgeon, or Anesthesiologist. Your duties in a Nurse Anesthetist position is to prepare supplies, equipment, and sometimes even the patient. During this preparation you study the patient’s test results and history in order to ensure the correct dosage of anesthesia is being administered.

Once things get under way you administer the anesthesia, then relay information to the Surgeon and Anesthesiologist, drawing on the vital signs you’re watching, and the knowledge you have of the patient before you go into surgery.

You are mainly there to assist the Physicians, but you may also be called upon to speak with the patient’s family and friends; updating them, and explaining the procedure. You might also be asked to administer oxygen and blood. Your position is therefore very important, vital to the surgical team, and vital to your patients.

Your role on the anesthesiology team is very similar to that of an Anesthesiologist Assistant. The difference is that you are more qualified, so you can be supervised by any Physician, and not just the Anesthesiologist.

Should I be a Nurse Anesthetist?

You should have a master's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.

  • How to become a Nurse Anesthetist

    Most Nurse Anesthetists have a Master's degree. Start by getting your Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:acag9a&chl=|certificate+%283%25%29||bachelor%27s+%289%25%29|master%27s+%2888%25%29|&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,88
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