Plastic surgery nurses are also known as aesthetic nurses and reconstructive surgery nurses. To be a nurse with this specialization, you must first become a registered nurse (RN), and then you must obtain certifications in reconstructive and cosmetic surgery.
Plastic surgery nurses specialize in caring for patients who undergo cosmetic surgical procedures including:
• Breast augmentation/reduction/reconstruction
• Body lifts/contouring
• Face/neck lift
• Hair transplant
• May include gender reassignment procedures
Educational Requirements for a Plastic Surgery Nurse?
The first step in becoming a plastic surgery nurse is becoming a Registered Nurse (RN). This can happen either by obtaining a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) or an Associate’s degree. Most offices and hospitals are hiring only nurses that are BSN prepared so it is highly encouraged to obtain that. Once you have completed your BSN, you can take the NCLEX-RN examination and become a Registered Nurse after you have passed.
After obtaining a nursing degree it is recommended to get several years of adult medical-surgical experience prior to transitioning to the role of a plastic surgery nurse. This is a highly competitive field and those interested will have to take additional classes and training to obtain the necessary knowledge. Unfortunately, most of the skills learned in this field are taught during on-the-job training.
Plastic Surgery Nurse Salary & Employment:
The average pay for a Plastic Surgery Nurse is $29.06 per hour. The highest pay is $41.48/hr. It is interesting to note that some nurses in this field earn bonuses and commissions.
The BLS identifies the following as the highest paying states for nursing:
The American Association for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery states the most common surgical procedures are:
• Breast Augmentation
• Blepharoplasty (repair of droopy eyelids)
The five most common minimally invasive procedures are:
• Dermal fillers
• Laser hair removal
• Chemical peels
Where Do Plastic Surgery Nurses Work?
Plastic surgery nurses can work in private medical offices, hospitals (operating room), and outpatient clinics. Specific outpatient clinics can include:
• Head and Neck (ENT)
• Outpatient surgery clinics
Benefits to Become a Plastic Surgery Nurse:
Actual benefits may vary depending on the institution, most include the following:
• Health insurance
• Certification Reimbursement
• Retirement Options
• Family Leave of Absence
• Maternity Leave
• Dental Insurance
• Vision Insurance
• Education Reimbursement
• Attendance at nursing conferences