crna vs. md

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  • #136786
    bsnstudentbsnstudent
    Participant

    I have one year left to complete my BSN, which I know I will do anyways because I don’t like to leave things unfinished. However, I can’t come to terms with if I will really be happy as a nurse. I’ve always wanted to be a doctor, but had a daughter young (she’s now 2) and went to nursing school instead. Given the high salaries and independence of CRNAs anyways, is it worth it to go on to be an anesthesiologist? I work in the OR now, and that is what I am absolutely passionate about, so it will be one or the other.

    #136788
    southernmdsouthernmd
    Participant

    Did you just equate anesthesiologist with CRNA? Trying to understand what you mean here…I really hope you did not do that.

    I would first decide if you want to be a physician or a nurse. Then either become a CRNA, as you will be an nurse or go to medical school and become a physician, who will then train in the specialty of anesthesiology. They are not the same thing at all.

    #136790
    AmmaMDAmmaMD
    Participant

    Southern, I think she’s saying that she wants to be either a CRNA or an anesthesiologist, but isn’t sure which is the better path – given that she’s finishing the BSN and how much CRNAs are able to do at this point, what is the cost/benefit of going for the anesthesiologist route now?

    #136795
    asunshineasunshine
    Participant

    I agree with southern. Decide first if you want to be a physician or a nurse, then go from there. Anesthesiology and nurse anesthesia are fields in flux, and there’s just no way to predict what the future holds, so you’re best doing what you want to do, IMHO. If you went to med school, the chances are high that you might choose something other than anesthesiology as a field in the end.

    FYI for medicine, after you graduate, you will need to complete pre-requisite science classes, 4 years med school + 4 years anesthesiology + 1 (optional) year fellowship. Far, far more training than a CRNA. That might appeal to you, or it might not!

    #136797
    southernmdsouthernmd
    Participant

    I started to write about three posts, and then I realized I’m a moderator, and I need to just bite my tongue, because it looks really bad if a moderator is the one that is being rude or caustic.

    I really don’t think this is an Anesthesia issue. It’s a profession choice issue. I think that’s what I’m going to have stick with.

    Do you want to be a nurse or a physician? To be a nurse, you finish your BSN and then maybe go to nurse practitioner school.

    Physician – take the pre-reqs, finish a bachelor’s of some type, four years of medical school, four years of Anesthesia residency, and then fellowship if you so desire. I plan to do two fellowships, and the two I want are often offered as a dual, so there you go.

    Those are the paths. Whether one is “worth it” is a personal decision.

    #136806
    ohiomommdohiomommd
    Participant

    Hi, I’m a psychiatrist married to an anesthesiologist.

    I can see why you’d ask the question, sort of avoiding the very important dr. vs. nurse debate, b/c you’re already looking at the speciality.

    I think if you’re comfortable with the level of independence of a CRNA — which means under a physician supervision, more or less depending on location and the CRNA experience — that you get to do the procedures and direct patient care, live in the OR you love, have reasonable work hours and get paid for your overtime, have more time with your family, far far far less debt — you should totally consider it!
    But yes, please, understand medical school + residency training + the onus of being the one-in-charge / liable / ethically responsible / buck-stops-here-gal really does augment your clinical decision making, globally, and that’s why midlevels are midlevels.

    I don’t know how competitive it is to get into CRNA training either. Another fantastic program, if you’ve got the premed reqs finished, is the anesthesiology assistant programs (not in all states, but dang! 2 tough years post college and you start working, much like a CRNA depending on the state (CRNAs, I understand, as an NP ,might get different privileges).

    No med students, nursing students, faculty, or staff were harmed in the composition of this message.

    #136810
    southernmdsouthernmd
    Participant

    LOL. I feel like I need to add a post-script that I’m truly not a jerk, ohiomommd!

    #136823
    ohiomommdohiomommd
    Participant

    hahha, southern 🙂 I’ve been so out-of-touch, what did you decide to match?? are you psyched??

    #136824
    southernmdsouthernmd
    Participant

    Wouldn’t you know….I’m very excited to apply in Anesthesiology. 🙂

    PS – I’m also terrified about this whole process of matching (but we’ll pretend I’m not).

    #136837
    Doc201XDoc201X
    Participant

    [quote=southernmd]LOL. I feel like I need to add a post-script that I’m truly not a jerk, ohiomommd! [/quote]

    No actually you don’t, being honest around here shouldn’t be interpreted as anything other than YOUR truth!

    That said, I’d be pretty concerned about the field of anesthesiology given all the new DNP programs that seem to be sprouting up like weeds. That and FP seem to be in the DNP crosshairs! Yikes!!!

    #138188
    megboomegboo
    Participant

    BSN – fwiw

    My dad is a CRNA. I applied to anesthesia residencies as an M4 med student here last weekend.

    It all comes down to how much autonomy and training you want to have. As a CRNA, you will not be doing complicated heart cases in most hospitals. You won’t be solo on transplants. Or many other high-risk cases. As a CRNA you will likely be doing bread and butter surg cases anywhere you want. But there will be differences in training, and as cliche as it is, “you don’t know what you don’t know”.

    If you’re fine in a midlevel position because you just want to get on with your career, you can really be fulfilled. You can make a great living as a CRNA in a rural area. CRNAs are never going away, but I (and southernmd, I’m sure) will defend being an MD in the OR over CRNA any day 😉

    #138190
    southernmdsouthernmd
    Participant

    So will the woman who had a stroke in the OR the other day (yes, this happened). Bet she was glad she had an MD to take care of her as a perioperative physician. 🙂

    #146377
    waleeedijazwaleeedijaz
    Participant

    I agree with southern. Decide first if you want to be a physician or a nurse, then go from there. Anesthesiology and nurse anesthesia are fields in flux, and there’s just no way to predict what the future holds, so you’re best doing what you want to do, IMHO. If you went to med school, the chances are high that you might choose something other than anesthesiology as a field in the end.

    #146379
    waleeedijazwaleeedijaz
    Participant

    I don’t know how competitive it is to get into CRNA training either. Another fantastic program, if you’ve got the premed reqs finished, is the anesthesiology assistant programs (not in all states, but dang! 2 tough years post college and you start working, much like a CRNA depending on the state (CRNAs, I understand, as an NP ,might get different privileges).

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