ASRT Online Learning Center

Continuing Education for Radiologic Technologists


Course Description
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Course Information


Course: ASRT Authored Courses, Cardiology

Module: An Introduction To Cardiovascular Pharmacology

Module Description: Audience: Cardiac or vascular intervention, Cardiac Invasive Specialists, vascular sonographers and echocardiographers.
Prerequisites: None
Skill level: intermediate to advanced
Expand your interventional knowledge by learning the physiological basics of cardiovascular medications. Cardiovascular medications are powerful tools in the cath lab arsenal, and you can expand your interventional knowledge by learning the physiological basics of these drugs. In addition to describing clot formation and platelet activation, cath lab pro Charlene Shellenberger, B.S., RN, RCIS, covers all aspects of major anticogulant, antiplatelet and thrombolytic medications including dosages, administration, indications and contraindications.


Learning Objectives
• Describe the body’s clotting mechanism, the role of platelets and natural clot breakdown.
• Differentiate between anticoagulants, antiplatelets and thrombolytics.
• Discuss ablation catheter fundamentals, including the criteria for choosing catheter tips.
• Identify major percutaneous coronary intervention medications, their origins, dosages and considerations for use.
• Explain the autonomic nervous system and the action of life-saving medications used for advanced cardiac life support.


Author: Ms. Charlene E. Shellenberger
About the author:

Charlene Shellenberger, RN, BS, RCIS
Originally from Pennsylvania, Char joined Healthworks after more than six years as a professional development registered nurse for the cardiac catheterization lab at Peninsula regional medical Center in Salisbury, MD.  While at peninsula, she was largely responsible fro training, mentoring and precepting all new hires in the cath lab, and believes strongly in ensuring professionals working in the cardiovascular setting understand the physiology behind the functions they are asked to perform.


Char began her nursing career at Baptist Hospital as a critical care nurse after graduating with an associate’s degree with honors in nursing from Pensacola (Florida) Junior College.  Her career has taken her to facilities across the country, with critical care nursing roles at Hamot medical center in Erie, PA, and Wilcox Memorial Hospital in Lihue, Kauai, HI, where she has provided direct patient care in MCICUs and CCUs.  She has been a BLS instructor and has often been the “go-to” person in the lab when it comes to trouble shooting equipment and/or process issues.  Charlene earned her bachelor’s of science in biology from Lycoming College in Williamsport, PA and is a registered invasive cardiovascular specialist (RCIS).


Sponsor and/or Accreditation: American Society of Radiologic Technologists
Credits: 1.00
Price: $18.00