Outpatient Surgery Magazine

A Drug Diverter Comes Clean - Subscribe to Outpatient Surgery Magazine - December 2017

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 109 of 166

have to crane your neck and squint your eyes to view the procedure on a monitor that's up and over to the right and too far away. "Do that 3 times a day for 20 years, and you'll really be sore," says Howard Ross, MD, chief of colon and rectal surgery at Temple University Hospital in Philadelphia, Pa. "You think of surgery as a gen- tle art, but surgeons can be very, very sore by day's end." Patients love the reduced pain and smaller incisions of minimally invasive surgery, but a day of laparoscopy can be a grueling total body workout for your surgeons. How are your surgeons coping with the physical pain of practicing? When his pinky and ring finger go numb during a longer case like a colon resection, it feels like your hand fell asleep and you hit your funny bone, says Sean Harbison, MD, a general surgeon at the Hospitals of the University of Pennsylvania-Penn Presbyterian in Philadelphia, Pa. In clinical terms, it's a median or an ulnar neuroprax- ia from overstressing your wrists. In reality, it's just one of laparoscopy's many aches and pains that can leave your surgeons feel- ing sore, stiff or worse — pain can incapacitate surgeons, limit their practice or shorten their careers. "I know several surgeons who had to stop doing surgery because of cervical disc problems," says Dr. Harbison. "They had to change their whole professional trajectory. One became an ICU doctor." After a day of 2 colon resections and 3 hemorrhoidectomies, Dr. Ross can remember plenty of days when it hurt to lift his head or turn to the side, when he had numb spots that lasted a week because he was holding the instruments for so long. Nowadays, he's much more aware of ergonomics in the OR. He takes the time to set up the room so that his posture is good and his body position is comfortable at all times during an operation — his shoulder girdle relaxed, a slight bend in the elbow, a natural position 1 1 0 • O U T PA T I E N T S U R G E R Y M A G A Z I N E • D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 7

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