Tuesday, October 02, 2012


You know how many times I have been going to ACLS classes every two years? A whole helluva lot of times. I have seen epi doses range from 58 mg every 10 seconds to .00000001 every hour. Back when I started there were no such things as defibrillators.  If someone arrested we just stuck their finger in a socket.....bada bing!

In other words, I dread and hate this q2 year obligation to keep working in the ER. I wait until the last minute to renew. I avoid the book til the last couple of days.  The renewal is always fun.  They jam all the shit into 8 hours, including BLS. 

CPR has become too much of a workout for this old gal. I mean 100/min, hard etc?! One cycle in and I called for a switch.  I mean I didn't want to have a stroke in class. (Although everyone would have know what to do...)

Then there are all of these numbers swirling around in my half demented brain: 30:2, every 6-8 seconds, 1mg, 300 mg, 2-10 mcg, 15:2, 300 jules, 100/min.....its too much.

The worst thing about ACLS is that every time you go, you think you will fail and humiliate yourself.  You picture yourself going back to the educator at work and telling her you failed and you have to take it again.  It never happens, but there is still that stupid fear, no matter how many times you take it.

I passed it. Like I always do. I'm traumatized, like I always am.

The worst thing? I have PALS next week 


JA-RN said...

And with every recertification, "they" change things-meds, dosages, whatever. Just think back to when you started, how basic resuscitation was so different. Really, I think if a person is going to make it,they'll come through, whatever we do. Just look @ all the people that managed to survive without whatever miniscule changes are made by the "experts".

EDNurseasauras said...

My last cycle of renewals was all in the same year: BLS, ACLS, TNCC, and PALS all in the same 5 month period. I was in school full time so I didn't open a single book and passed them all. And I was placed in the ACLS group with non-critical nurses who were scared shi*less so I had to practically do all the scenarios. Whatever. I have been taking these things so long I remember when we didn't resuscitate people. Who remembers doing a pre-cordial thump?

Unknown said...

At least they're showing research as to WHY things changed, as opposed to tweaking things just to force us to buy new books.

Phiddy said...

I worked ICU in a very small hospital. It was mandatory to have up-to-date; ACLS, PALS and NALS. Of course they weren't all in a week but, I too dreaded them!

LeShea said...

Tru-dat!! Every year I am convinced that I will screw up and use the "old numbers" or the "old way" and fail......Every nurse I know fears the stupid renewals.....its much easier to code someone than it is to fake it isn't it??!! I am much better at real codes.

Anonymous said...

I don't care what they say, the precordial thump works, sometimes. I also remember when we defibbed at 300 joules all the time! We thought that joule dial was just for cardioversion.

I used to teach BLS, ACLS, etc (but never PALS). Each year, I learned all of the amendments, additions, subtractions, and I would teach the new techniques. What did I do in a real arrest? Everything I used to do years ago, including the precordial thump. Can't seem to make my body reflexes relearn the new stuff - except the joule thing. We used to have a lot of needlessly burned patients. Tricia