Safe Lateral Positioning for Improved Team and Patient Outcomes.

Wednesday, February 17, 2021 1:34:42 PM America/New_York

The lateral surgical position is one of the most labor-intensive surgical positions that depends on brute force and team strength.  The lateral position is not only physically taxing on the staff, but also can be as hard on the patient; therefore, it is important to have an experienced clinical team member leading the way.  The surgeries that rely on the lateral surgical position vary by specialty and include lateral hip, thoracotomy, spine surgery, or kidney surgery. Many times, the lateral position is preferred over prone when possible for obese patients because the bulk of the patients panniculus can be displaced off the abdomen.  To help improve patient outcomes, this blog will discuss the risk and interventions that are involved with placing a patient in the lateral position.

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Protect the Heels with Evidence Based Interventions

Monday, November 2, 2020 12:30:06 PM America/New_York

The supine position is the most common surgical position with the patient lying on their back with the head, neck and spine in a neutral position.   This position is not without pressure injury risk as there is increased pressure and shear forces to the scapula, occiput, elbows, sacrum, coccyx, and heels. Today we are going to look at ways to mitigate the risk for pressure injuries (PI) to the heel, related to the supine position. When a patient lies supine, all the pressure of their lower legs and feet rest on the heel.  Heel PI represents approximately one third of pressure injuries acquired, and can result in increased morbidity and mortality. In some cases, heel pressure injuries can lead to amputation of the affected limb.

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Pressure Injuries: A Never Event, Part 2

Monday, September 21, 2020 1:23:42 PM America/New_York

Last time we talked about the Hospital Acquired Pressure Injury (HAPI) and the unnecessary cost, pain and suffering that can accompany them.  Perioperative pressure injuries are real, as Spector, Limcangco, Owens and Steiner (2016) point  out, perioperative pressure injuries can increase the cost of surgery-related hospital stays by an estimated 44% and may add approximately $1.3 billion annually to health care costs in the United States.  

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Foam or Gel for Patient Position: What Does the Evidence Say?

Monday, May 18, 2020 1:17:49 PM America/New_York

One of the biggest responsibilities of the operating room (OR) team is to ensure patient safety. There are many facets to patient safety in the OR. Safe patient positioning is a critical facet since the patient is unable to tell you if they are in pain or uncomfortable.  The first step to improved outcomes related to patient positioning is to look to the evidence for guidance when choosing your positioning device.  There are extrinsic and intrinsic factors that contribute to the development of pressure injuries (PI) in the OR, one of the extrinsic factors is prolonged surface interface pressure. In this week’s blog we will look at a scientific comparison between foam and gel used as positioning devices in order to determine best practice. 

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