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What to expect for ACLS training?

Discussion in 'General Residency Issues' started by devildoc2, Jun 12, 2008.

  1. devildoc2

    devildoc2 Banned Banned

    Jul 11, 2003
    How do they test you? Do you have to go up in front of the whole class and demonstrate a run-through of a code? Do they want you to demonstrate BLS and AEDs and interpret rhythms on the fly, or is it just a written test?

    For the drugs, do you have to know only the indications and doses, or do you also have to know detailed pharma info like distribution, half life, side effects, etc?

    Can anybody share any experiences, including how hard is the test?
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  3. RTrain

    RTrain National Merit Finalist 2+ Year Member

    Aug 18, 2007
    It's not hard. The goal is to get you passed - they don't want to weed out, they just want everyone to have the skills. Yes, you have to get up in front of the class, and yes you have to take a written test, but if you do poorly, they go through what you did wrong and have you try again.

    It's training, not testing. Don't worry. :thumbup:
  4. Agreed.

    You just have to learn the two basic algorithms (VFib/pulseless VTach and bradycardia/asystole) and know how to manage patients coding in these situations. The written test is mainly based on the reading material.
  5. devildoc2

    devildoc2 Banned Banned

    Jul 11, 2003
    What about the airway stuff? Do you have to prove you can intubate a mannechin?

    Does the written test include questions on:

    1) Intubation/airway stuff, like when to use a combitube vs other kinds of tubes

    2) Any of the stupid "team leadership" crap. The ACLS book has a chapter on BS like "qualities of a team leader"
  6. I do remember demonstrating that I could intubate the mannequin...but this was very low-key and not a crucial part of the class.
  7. Faebinder

    Faebinder Slow Wave Smurf 10+ Year Member

    May 24, 2006
    ACLS is not a weed out... no worries.. do the preview cd.

    Fear ATLS.. that can be hard for interns.
  8. devildoc2

    devildoc2 Banned Banned

    Jul 11, 2003
    ATLS is only for e-med and surgery residents only right? My residency program didnt say anything about that.
  9. Yup!
  10. buckley

    buckley 7+ Year Member

    Jul 30, 2007
    How long does it take to finish the reading material? My program doesn't want to ship it overseas, and I just had it addressed to a friend of mine. I won't be getting in till the day before.

    Do people really wear ties for the ACLS? No jeans?
  11. pgg

    pgg Laugh at me, will they? Moderator 10+ Year Member

    Dec 14, 2005
    Home Again
    Yes. I did my ACLS recert a few weeks ago, and was a bit irritated to find that the only question I missed on the written part was some BS "team leadership" touchy feely crap.

    It was just one question though. The rest of it was pretty easy. Just know the algorithms, not so much to get through the class, but so you do the right thing some night when you are the first one to a code. Watching some residents run codes around here is like, well, insert your own favorite politically incorrect metaphor. Don't be one of them.

    I'd add the tachyarrhythmias (SVT, afib with RVR, etc) as key too - I've actually had to manage more of those acutely than outright pump-on-the-chest codes.
  12. ekydrd

    ekydrd Senior Member 5+ Year Member

    Oct 14, 2004
    Louisville KY
    Same here. There have been way more calls about a tachyarrhythmia than full code on my call months.
  13. True, those are important as well.

    But from all the codes I've run (well over 40-50), I typically see PEA, asystole or pulseless VTach.
  14. ekydrd

    ekydrd Senior Member 5+ Year Member

    Oct 14, 2004
    Louisville KY
    I guess I see the tachyarrhythmias 'cause the majority of my pts are either old geezers with bad tickers or crackheads who haven't figured out that the reason their heart is beating a gazillion miles a minute and they feel like crap is because of the crack.

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