What Is A Rheumatology Nurse?
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A rheumatology nurse provides care to patients suffering from rheumatic disorders. A rheumatic disease is an inflammatory condition that affects the joints and muscles. Some of these disorders are the result of excessive use/wear and tear, while others are the result of immune system dysfunction. Among the diseases that a rheumatology nurse may encounter are the following:
- Fibromyalgia – a broad musculoskeletal pain syndrome
- Spondylitis – inflammation of the spine and major joints.
- Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune illness in which the body attacks its own tissue, particularly joints, resulting in discomfort and damage.
- Lyme Disease is a tick-borne infection that manifests as a rash with a “bull’s eye” pattern, flu-like symptoms, and exhaustion.
- Lupus is an autoimmune condition in which the body attacks its own tissues. It can affect a variety of bodily areas/organs.
Becoming a Nurse Specializing in Rheumatology
A significant portion of the rheumatology nurse’s job is to assist patients with rheumatic diseases in managing their pain and symptoms. As a result, RNs who are compassionate, patient, and excellent communicators will thrive in this profession. Additionally, a thorough understanding of the body’s joints and muscles is essential. Additionally, rheumatology nurses must educate their patients successfully on how to manage discomfort and lessen painful symptoms through pharmaceutical prescriptions and/or healthy lifestyle choices.
What Education Do Rheumatology Nurses Need?
The first step in becoming a rheumatology nurse is to enroll in a recognized university or college and earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. To begin working as a nurse, the National Council Licensure Examination must be passed (NCLEX-RN). After completing the licensure exams, rheumatology nurses may be required to gain experience in an acute care setting before finding work in clinics, however some will give training. On-the-job training might vary from a few weeks to several months, depending on the clinic and the organizational structure. To work as a rheumatology nurse in a hospital setting, the nurse must have good evaluation skills, IV skills, a Basic Life Support (BLS) certification, and, in some situations, an Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS) certification.
Is it necessary to obtain any certifications or credentials?
The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) previously offered a certification in rheumatology nursing. This accreditation, however, is now accessible for renewal only. RNs who already possess this certification may renew it every five years as long as they maintain their nursing license and meet all renewal requirements.
Where Do Rheumatology Nursing Professionals Work?
Nurses specializing in rheumatology might be found in specialist clinics or physician offices. Rheumatology nurses may also work in hospital settings, however their patient populations may be broader than those with rheumatic disorders.
What Is the Role of a Rheumatology Nurse?
A rheumatology nurse treats and manages rheumatic disease symptoms in patients. Numerous people with chronic rheumatic illnesses require long-term management of symptoms, including pain. Rheumatology nurses collaborate closely with physicians and multidisciplinary teams of healthcare specialists to ensure that patients receive proper pain and symptom treatment. Assisting patients with rheumatic disorders in living a healthy life is a primary responsibility of this nurse.
What Are the Responsibilities Duties and Responsibilities of a Rheumatology Nurse?
Among the daily responsibilities of a rheumatology nurse are the following:
- Vital indicators such as temperature, heart rate, blood pressure, and respirations must be monitored.
- Bloodwork monitoring
- Examining people suffering from rheumatic illnesses
- Assisting and collaborating with physicians that specialize in rheumatology and other specialties
- Educating and guiding patients
- Medications management for patients
Salary and Employment for Rheumatology Nurses
As is the case with the majority of nursing positions, salary is location-dependent. Hospitals typically pay more than clinics and physicians’ offices. A larger income will be earned as a result of advanced experience and qualification. The average annual pay is $66,640, ranging from $52,000 to $96,000. This compensation is in line with the national average for registered nurses in the United States.
By 2025, it is anticipated that there will be half the number of rheumatology nurses available to meet demand. In short, nurses interested in pursuing a career in rheumatic nursing have outstanding work prospects.