pediatric positioners

Pressure injury prevention depends, in large part, on right-sizing the products used to position patients during surgery. Pediatric positioning, our company founders realized early on, poses a unique challenge, and for that precise reason, Action Products created a comprehensive line of positioners designed specifically for neonates, infants, and children.

Positioners, table pads, and overlays work by reducing or redistributing pressure, thus reducing shearing forces. But, as one article in the Journal of the Dermatology Nurses’ Association comments, while the perioperative environment itself presents complex challenges for protecting patients’ skin during surgery, “unfortunately many of the institution's nursing resources and recommendations for protecting patient's skin are not applicable or able to be fully implemented during the intraoperative period because of the variables of the surgical environment. The common positioning problems that staff face in EOPPO is trying to get enough exposure of the surgical site for the surgeon while still providing support during long and complex surgeries.” 

Differences in airway anatomy of neonates’ and small children’s airway anatomy, for example, pose potential anesthetic complications, and infants are especially vulnerable to hypothermia compounded by cold operating rooms, wound exposure, and intravenous fluid administration, Drs. Teena Bansal and Sarla Hooda of the Sharma University of Health Sciences in India comment. Monitoring systemic blood pressure is especially important in neonates and infants during the perioperative period, the authors emphasize, and a cuff too large for the patient’s arm results in falsely low readings.

That precise concern about “too-large” products applies to pressure injury prevention for undersized patients. It is uniquely satisfying, given our commitment to patient safety and protection against pressure injury, to know that Action Products is a supplier for every one of the hospitals on the U.S. News Best Children’s Hospitals Honor Roll for 2018. As just one example, the Action Products Pediatric Chest Roll comes in eight sizes.

“In the pediatric population, the occiput is the largest bony prominence and the most common site of pressure ulcer development, Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins write in the Wound Care Journal, with sedation identified as a major risk factor. Again, Action Products designed its pediatric donut head pad in sizes suitable for neo-natal and pediatric use, along with a pediatric head pad with a center dish.

Doctors and nurses should never be forced to retrofit devices and positioners intended for adult bodies. Studies have demonstrated over and over again that pressure injury prevention is related to the right-sizing of positioning products used in the O.R. for neonatal and pediatric surgery.