Surgical Technology Careers
Surgical Technology Career Paths
Surgical technologists are members of operating room teams, which most commonly include surgeons, anesthesiologists, and circulating nurses. Before an operation, they help prepare the operating room by setting up surgical instruments and equipment, sterile drapes, and sterile solutions. They also get patients ready for surgery as well as pass instruments and other sterile supplies to surgeons and surgeon assistants during surgery.
Technologists advance by specializing in a particular area of surgery, such as neurosurgery or open-heart surgery.
- Certified surgical technologists with additional specialized education or training also may act in the role of the surgical first assistant or circulator. The surgical first assistant, as defined by the American College of Surgeons (ACS), provides aid in exposure, hemostasis (controlling blood flow and stopping or preventing hemorrhage), and other technical functions under the surgeon’s direction that help the surgeon carry out a safe operation.
- A circulating technologist is the “unsterile” member of the surgical team who interviews the patient before surgery, prepares the patient, helps with anesthesia, obtains and opens packages for the “sterile” people to remove the sterile contents during the procedure, keeps a written account of the surgical procedure, and answers the surgeon’s questions about the patient during the surgery.
- Some surgical technologists manage central supply departments in hospitals, or take positions with insurance companies, sterile supply services, and operating equipment firms.
Surgical technologists work in clean, well-lit, cool environments. They must stand for long periods and remain alert during operations. At times, they may be exposed to communicable diseases and unpleasant sights, odors, and materials. Most work a regular 40-hour week, although they may be on call or work nights, weekends, and holidays on a rotating basis
ASSOCIATE OF SCIENCE & ASSOCIATE OF APPLIED SCIENCE IN SURGICAL TECHNOLOGY
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Health Specialties Teachers; Postsecondary; Surgical Technologists
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