Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Salary Survey - January 2020 - Subscribe to Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Outpatient Surgery Magazine, providing current information on Surgical Services, Surgical Facility Administration, Outpatient Surgery News and Trends, OR Excellence and more.

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Page 71 of 110

heel or her backside, for example, that body area would need additional padding to make sure as little pressure as possible is put on to that body part during the operation. When possible, the heels of a patient should be lifted off the operating table. The simplest way to do that is to use egg crate foam. It comes in a big brick. People tend to break it in half, but you're better off leaving it as one piece and using it as a cush- ion under the calf of the patient so that their heels float off the end of it. Post-surgical heel injuries are very common because if you're oper- ating on the leg, it's not moving, so the heel is just dug right into the table. If the patient is draped across the legs, you don't see the heels. You could dress the heel, especially for patients with significant arthri- tis or who are having knee surgery, but in most cases foam achieves the same result — getting the heels off the bed — and is a whole lot cheaper. Repositioning patients is straightforward: Make sure they get off the position they were laying in while in the operating room. If they were on their face all day, they simply lie on their back afterward. If they were on their back all day, however, tell patients they need to give their back a rest and that you need to get them on their side. That usually convinces them to turn, even though it might hurt because we're moving a body part that just had a surgery. 5. Watch for PACU injuries. I've seen a lot of heel injuries take place in post-op knee surgery patients when a physical thera- pist or another professional tells the patient to bend her knee up, push her heel into the bed and then slide her leg down into the bed. This makes the heel literally run up and down the mattress and leads to blistering. This is a standard exercise and a common occur- rence in post-op outpatient settings, so your nurses need to make sure the patients have a dressing on that heel or a sock on their foot 7 2 • O U T PA T I E N T S U R G E R Y M A G A Z I N E • J A N U A R Y 2 0 2 0

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