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Post Operative Care


Definition


The Management of the patient after surgery is called post-operative care. It includes care given on the immediate post-operative period, Both the post-anesthesia care unit(PACU) and operating room, as well as during these days following the surgery.


Purpose


The purpose of post-operative care is to block such problems as infection, to promote alleviating the surgical slits, and to come back the patient to a state of health.


Description


Post-operative care assessment, involves planning, diagnosis, intervention and outcome evaluation. The expanse of post-operative care needed by each patient depends on the first health status of the patient, type of wound surgery, and whether the wound surgery was performed in a day-surgery center or in the hospital. Patients who have done procedures in a day-surgery-center, before they discharged to go home, usually require only a few hours of care by health care professionals. The patient must be admitted to the hospital when post-anesthesia or postoperative complications occur within these hours. Patients who are admitted to the hospitals due to complications may require some days or weeks of postoperative nursing care by hospital staff before patients discharged.


Post-Anesthesia Care Unit


After the surgical procedure, an Anesthesia reversal and perturbation of the patient is transferred to the post-anesthesia care unit(PACU). Depends on the factors such as

the amount of time spent by the patient in the post-anesthesia care unit is decided by the PACU, rather than being sent to the PACU, some patients may be moved directly to the critical care unit. For example, the patients who had coronary artery bypass grafting are moved directly to the critical care unit.
In the PACU, the nurse anesthetist describes on the patients state, I.e,

The receiving staff should also be made aware of any problems during the surgery, including any differences in hemodynamic stability.

Assessment categories like Vital signs, Pain status, patient’s airway patency and level of consciousness are the major priorities upon admission to the PACU. Some of the Assessment categories are given below.


When the patient meet established criteria for discharge, as determined by the use of scale at that time patient is discharged from the PACU. For example Aldrete scale, which scores the patient on mobility, respiratory status, consciousness, circulation and pulse oximetry. Depending on the patient's condition, type of surgery, the patient may be joined either a general surgical floor or the intensive care unit. Since the patient is sedated from anesthesia, safety is a primary goal. Patients in a day surgery center are either discharged from the PACU to their home, or directly discharged home after they have voided, and tolerated a small amount of oral intake.


After Care


After post-operative care patients are very comfortable, either in chair or bed, and that they have their call lights accessible. After completing dressing changes, blood-soaked dressings should be properly disposed of in a bio-hazard container. Before starting any procedure again medication should be offered that might cause discomfort.