PAs play an integral role in the global management of cardiothoracic surgery patients, including all aspects of peri-operative care from performing patient histories and daily rounds to invasive surgical procedures, including the critical retrieval of vascular tissue in coronary bypass procedures.
CT PAs often fill the role as first assistant and primary care PA on all adult and pediatric cardiac cases. They also exhibit extensive knowledge of artificial cardiac devices, ventilators and the pharmacologic effects of vasoactive/cardiotonic drugs. Most CT PAs work 50-60 hours each week, providing patient care expertise in the postoperative acute care units, step-down units and regular floors.
As the specialty of cardiothoracic surgery continues to evolve, the flexible and adaptable nature of the surgical PA will be an essential element for every successful practice.
Highly technical and demanding skills are mastered through years of physician assistant practice, master degree and post-graduate surgical residency.
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