American Heart Month: What It’s Like to be a Cardiac Nurse

NursingFebruary 01, 2022

When you go into nursing, you can choose from a variety of specialties, one of which is cardiology. Cardiovascular disease is a leading cause of death in the United States and this focus can be especially rewarding since it involves caring for patients who are very sick when they come in seeking care. Becoming a cardiac nurse gives the familiar “I ❤️ New York” saying new meaning.

Acute and Chronic Care

Nurses in this field work alongside cardiologists, treating patients with acute and chronic heart conditions. For acute conditions, such as heart attacks or cardiac arrest, nurses will use tools like defibrillators, resuscitating a patient who has gone into cardiac arrest. Cardiac nurses may also be involved in heart surgery, preparing patients, assisting the surgeon during the procedure, and helping patients with the post-op recovery process. It’s not unusual to work with patients who come into the hospital in serious condition and, after undergoing treatments, leave as though they were never sick.

For chronic conditions, cardiac nurses work with cardiologists to assess and manage patients’ conditions. They’ll monitor patients' vital signs, using electrocardiograms and other tools, and they may administer medication and treatments, such as catheterization and balloon pumps. Cardiac nurses also educate patients and their families about their condition and provide at-home care instructions after diagnosis or treatment.

A Love of Learning

Several types of healthcare facilities hire cardiac nurses, including hospitals, cardiology offices, medical clinics, and long-term care facilities. Nurses who choose to focus on cardiology often have a love of learning. Cardiovascular medicine is always changing due to new research, technology, and innovation, and nurses will be at the forefront of important medical advancements that help decrease, prevent, and treat cardiovascular disease. 

Cardiac nurses save and change people’s lives, and this career can be very rewarding. If this professional path sounds like a fit for you, St. Paul’s School of Nursing offers a variety of programs that can prepare you to pursue this important field. Click here for more information or call us today at (855) 822-3018 and speak to one of our career counselors.