Careers in Anesthesiology - Video
The field of Anesthesiology encompasses three professions: anesthesiologists, anesthesiologist assistants and anesthesia technicians.
There are three types of professions in the area of Anesthesiology. The first, an anesthesiologist, is a doctor who is medically trained to make anesthesia-related medical decisions in regard to a surgical patient. The second, an anesthesiologist assistant, works under the direct supervision of an anesthesiologist in order to employ anesthesia care procedures. The third profession, an anesthesia technician, is an individual who is responsible for anesthesia equipment maintenance. These individuals provide support to anesthesiologists and their assistants. All three of these professionals focus on providing or maintaining the pain relief of a patient who is undergoing surgery.
Anesthesiologists administer pain relief to patients undergoing a surgical procedure. Examples of such situations may include labor and delivery, patients in intensive care or in the operating room. These physicians are responsible for the well-being of surgical patients and continuously monitor vital signs such as heart rate, breathing and body temperatures during surgery. Anesthesiologists work side-by-side with other physicians in order to recommend and administer pain treatment plans for patients before, during and after an operation.
Anesthesiologist assistants must always work under the supervision of a licensed anesthesiologist. Daily duties may include administering the directed pain relief to a patient before and after surgery. They may also aid in the upkeep of patient records and other paperwork as it relates to vital signs and anesthesia administration.
An Anesthesia technician is responsible for the daily maintenance and operation of anesthesia machines, tools and equipment. Daily duties may range from providing routine machine operation and maintenance to troubleshooting or calibrating equipment.
Anesthesiologists are typically found in hospitals and work directly with other surgical physicians and their patients. They may work long days, depending on the size and scope of the facility, including on-call hours. Anesthesiologist assistants also work in hospitals. Both professionals may sometimes work in outpatient clinics, though many times it is for the particular clinic that their hospital is affiliated with. Anesthesia technicians also work primarily in hospitals and outpatients clinics. On a typical work day, these professionals can be found in teaching facilities, trauma and transplant units.