What does a surgical technologist do?

A surgical technologist (also called operating room technician) assists surgical teams before, during, and after surgery. Many have training and experience as nurses’ aides or licensed practical nurses.

What might a surgical technologist do in a workday?

  • helping surgical teams scrub and put on gloves and masks.
  • washing/shaving and preparing patients for surgery.
  • sterilizing equipment and operating rooms.
  • passing instruments to the surgical team.
  • helping hold retractors and cutting sutures.
  • operating equipment, such as lights and suction machine.
  • taking inventory of tools used during surgery (e.g. sponges, needles).

How much does a surgical technologist earn?

  • $22,000 - $30,000

How do I become a surgical technologist?

Students interested in surgical technologist careers should take challenging high school courses in science, math and English. Those interested in becoming medical assistants also should consider courses in secretarial skills, computer training, and bookkeeping. Most of these professions require certification, which includes completing educational requirements and passing an exam specific to the career.

Where else can I learn about becoming a surgical technologist?

Association of Surgical Technologists
6 W. Dry Creek Circle, Suite 200 / Littleton, CO 80120
tel:  (303) 694-9130 or (800) 637-7433 / web:  www.ast.org

Educational Institutions in Virginia for Surgical Technologists: