Career Awareness

REAL LIFE SURGICAL ASSISTANT

KRISTINE

I feel fortunate that I can be a part of a team making a difference in people's lives.

I am a surgical assistant. Most days I work in Cardiac, Thoracic or Vascular Surgery. Patients typically come to the operating room at about 7:45 a.m. I greet the patient, put the patient on the table and prepare and position the patient. Procedures can last 15 minutes to over eight hours. During the case, I expose the site for the surgeon, cauterize vessels, suction blood, tie sutures, cut sutures and generally anticipate the surgeon's needs. After surgery I help close the patient and take the patient off the table. Then we bring in the next patient and do the same thing over. On average, we have one large case or two to three standard cases per day.

If you are interested in human anatomy there is nothing better than surgery. I get great job satisfaction and recognition from working alongside the Mayo surgeons and the rest of the operating crew. They are a great group of people!

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