The Ultimate Guide to Becoming a Surgical Technician

Are you interested in pursuing a career in the medical field but aren’t sure where to start? Becoming a surgical technician could be the perfect fit for you. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through everything you need to know about becoming a surgical technician, from education and training to job outlook and salary potential.

Education and Training

To become a surgical technician, you will need to complete a formal training program. These programs are typically offered by vocational schools, community colleges, and universities. The length of the program can vary, but most programs can be completed in 9-24 months. During your training, you will learn about surgical instruments, sterilization techniques, patient care, and more. Some programs also include a hands-on clinical component where you will gain practical experience in a surgical setting.

Job Outlook

The job outlook for surgical technicians is promising, with a projected growth rate of 7% from 2019 to 2029, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This growth is faster than the average for all occupations, which is great news for aspiring surgical technicians. As the population continues to age and advances in medical technology increase the demand for surgical procedures, the need for qualified surgical technicians is expected to rise.

Salary Potential

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for surgical technicians was $49,710 in May 2020. The top 10% of surgical technicians earned more than $71,400 per year, while the lowest 10% earned less than $34,120. The salary potential for surgical technicians can vary depending on factors such as experience, location, and employer. With experience and additional certifications, surgical technicians can increase their earning potential.

Certification and Advancement

While certification is not required to work as a surgical technician in all states, it is highly recommended to enhance job prospects and earning potential. The National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA) offers the Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) credential, which is recognized nationwide. To become certified, you must graduate from an accredited surgical technology program and pass the CST exam.

For surgical technicians looking to advance their careers, there are opportunities to specialize in areas such as cardiac surgery, neurosurgery, or orthopedic surgery. Additionally, with further education and training, surgical technicians can advance to roles such as surgical first assistant or surgical technologist instructor.


As you can see, becoming a surgical technician can be a rewarding and fulfilling career choice. With the right education and training, you can enter a growing field with excellent job prospects and salary potential. If you are passionate about healthcare, have a steady hand, and enjoy working in a fast-paced environment, consider pursuing a career as a surgical technician.

Thank you for reading The Ultimate Guide to Becoming a Surgical Technician. We hope you found this information helpful. If you have any questions or would like to share your own experiences as a surgical technician, please leave a comment below.

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