What are the Different Types of Jobs in Anesthesia?

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  • Written By: Donn Saylor
  • Edited By: John Allen
  • Last Modified Date: 08 November 2019
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There are three main jobs in anesthesia: anesthesiology doctor, anesthesiologist assistant, and anesthesiology nurse. Each of these types of professionals is a pain management consultant, skilled in the beneficial administration of medicine for sedating and comforting patients undergoing surgery. Those working in an anesthesiology career are schooled in the latest treatment methods and utilize their medical know-how to choose the right anesthesia options for patients.

Jobs in anesthesia require intricate knowledge of the major types of anesthesia that are most commonly employed. Local anesthesia, applied directly to an afflicted area to numb the nerve endings, and general anesthesia, which is injected or inhaled and renders the body asleep, are two of the most frequently utilized types. Regional anesthesia is akin to local anesthesia but is applied to a larger area of the body. Conscious sedation promotes an altered state of consciousness that allows the patient to be awake during surgery while feeling no pain. Anesthesia professionals draw from their expertise in these forms of anesthesia to find the appropriate course of sedation for a patient.

An anesthesiologist is a licensed medical doctor who has specialized training in anesthesia. He or she administers the necessary sedatives and observes the patient throughout the course of surgery to ensure the procedure is running smoothly. An anesthesiology doctor also monitors the patient's recovery, keeps detailed records, and will traditionally meet with a patient before surgery to discuss the available options.


Anesthesiologist assistants work in conjunction with anesthesiologists and support the overall administration and monitoring of the patient. These types of jobs in anesthesia require special schooling in anesthesiology assisting, usually in conjunction with a bachelor's degree in a medical field. The individual working in this capacity may be called upon to start IVs, prepare the patient as well as the medication, and follow up with the patient after surgery is complete.

Nursing jobs in anesthesia involve an education as a registered nurse as well as specific training in the field of anesthetics. He or she often functions in a similar role to that of an anesthesiologist: meeting with patients, choosing the right medications, administering the sedation, observance and monitoring, and patient follow-up. An anesthesiology nurse will also typically regulate medication as needed, increasing or decreasing the amount of sedation as he or she deems appropriate for the patient throughout surgery.

Those working in the field of anesthesia are employed in a variety of surgical settings. They can be found in several different types of operating rooms, from emergency rooms and trauma centers to cardiovascular, transplantation, and neurological surgical theaters. Given the wide array of surgeries that utilize anesthesia, jobs in this field have grown significantly in popularity.



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