What Is Perfusionist , what Does A Perfusionist Do? - TheCareerHub
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    RS 25000-40000

Who is Perfusionist?

Perfusionists, also known as cardiovascular perfusionists or clinical perfusionists, play a crucial role in cardiovascular surgery. They operate "heart-lung machines," and are responsible for every aspect of it when there is a requirement to interrupt or replace the functioning of the heart. The machine is responsible for circulating blood in and out of a patient's body.

Typical day at work

What does Perfusionist do?

A perfusionist is a highly skilled member of the cardiothoracic surgical team who specialises in using the heart-lung machine (also known as the cardiopulmonary bypass machine) during cardiac surgery. This allows the cardiothoracic surgeon to perform surgery on a motionless, unbeatable heart. Cardiothoracic surgeons, anesthesiologists, physician assistants, surgical technologists, and nurses collaborate with perfusionists. Perfusionists are vital members of the cardiovascular surgical team since they are in charge of running the heart-lung (cardiopulmonary bypass) machine and managing the patient's circulatory and respiratory functions. Blood is diverted away from the heart and lungs by the heart-lung machine. It also oxygenates the blood before returning it to the body. This is all accomplished without the need for the blood to pass through the heart.

To set up and operates heart-lung machine in hospital to replace the function of heart and lungs during surgery or respiratory failure
To collect information, prior to surgery, regarding the patient from the physician and surgeon, patients’ medical chart and history required to set up the machine and associated equipment.
To select, assemble, set up, and test the heart-lung machine to ensure that machine and associated equipment function according to specifications.
To operate heart-lung machine to regulate blood circulation and composition
To administer drugs and anesthetic agents, and to control body temperature during surgery or respiratory failure of patients.
To monitor and observe operation of heart-lung machine and patient’s physiologic variables such as blood temperature, blood composition, and flow rate, and adjust equipment to maintain normal body functions.
To clean, sterilize and adjust parts of the heart-lung machine.

Abilities & aptitude needed

What are the skills, abilities & aptitude needed to become Perfusionist?

Perfusionists must have active listening skills and provide full attention to what surgeons and other professionals brief about the case due to the high risk associated with work. They must also effectively communicate the information required to the team to yield positive outcomes. Critical thinking ability would enable them to use logic and reasoning to determine the best solutions and approaches to specific problems. They need good observation skills to monitor their patients, determine their status, take corrective action if necessary, and monitor the working condition of the machinery used in the machine. They must also be decisive enough to make decisions, have autonomy in their choices, and use logic and skill to judge the best course of action for their patient.


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Career Outlook

What does the future look like for Perfusionist?

The typical workplace of a perfusionist is the operating rooms of hospitals. As part of the surgical team, they work beside the operating table. The Perfusionist is seen working in a Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit (CIVIC). Medical centres or third-party perfusion companies usually hire them. Perfusionists will typically work a scheduled 40-hour week, but this may include some nights, weekends and holidays etc., on emergency calls. In addition, Perfusionists can teach in certification programs, assist with research or work for perfusion equipment manufacturers. The average salary is 4 lakhs per annum when they have 1-4 Years of experience. When they attain 5 -9 Years of experience, the salary rises to 6 Lakhs per annum.

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