Postoperative Splinting (Nursing)

by Samantha Rhea, MSN, RN

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    00:04 Hi, guys. Welcome to postoperative care.

    00:07 So you're actually going to be exposed to this type of care in several different areas of nursing.

    00:13 This can range from pediatrics to the intensive care unit to the medical surgical unit.

    00:18 Now, any time you see postoperative care, there's going to be some commonalities that you need to know as a nurse.

    00:25 So now let's start with the basic one which is called splinting.

    00:29 This is actually going to be really helpful for your patients that's had maybe a bypass for example, such as a heart surgery where they've got a large chest incision.

    00:39 Or someone whose had a large abdominal surgery and also having an incision on their abdomen.

    00:45 So let us take a look at what you're going to need.

    00:47 You're going to need a pillow, number one.

    00:49 So the pillow's going to vary from facility to facility. Let your patient have some fun here.

    00:54 Sometimes, if a patient's had a heart surgery, you might see a large heart pillow or sometimes they may give you a little teddy bear, but just something like, something soft and supportive for the patient.

    01:05 So, again, make sure you get the pillow and have your patient ready.

    01:09 So before we start, just know, any time you cough and a patient has a large maybe chest or an abdominal incision, it's super painful.

    01:19 So this is really helpful to support that and help reduce the pain.

    01:23 So before we get started, make sure you give that pillow to their patient and instruct them to hug it.

    01:28 So, again, this is going to be either over the chest or over the abdomen.

    01:33 Now, again, instruct them to hug it tightly each time they cough.

    01:37 Now, this is really important that you tell a patient, "Hey, cough regularly.

    01:41 I know it's uncomfortable, but use that pillow to splint it." Now, how often should we do this? Now, this is really going to be determine base on your assessment as a nurse.

    01:51 Also note, that the physician will usually order maybe a minimum number of times the patient needs to do this.

    01:58 Also, again, the nurse can assess here how often we need to do this without a physician order? This is really important to help keep that respiratory status and those lungs clear.

    02:08 Also, don't forget, it definitely help reduce pain when the patient cough with that incision.

    02:18 Hi. I'm here with my friend Brandon, and we're going to show you how to split any time that the patient needs to cough.

    02:25 Now, one thing to note is a lot of the times, if someone has had a surgery such as abdominal incision or something that requires a chest incision for example, it can be really painful when the patient's coughing and they have those fresh post-op incisions.

    02:41 So one way so in one way we can remedy that is to split that.

    02:45 So, again, what I'm going to do is instruct Brandon that any time he coughs he wants to hug that pillow. So I'm going to hand him the pillow now.

    02:53 Here you go, Brandon, thank you.

    02:55 So Brandon just got out of a abdominal surgery and he's got an abdominal incision.

    02:59 So what I'm going to instruct him to do, if you would go ahead and just like you are, hug that pillow against your abdominal incision.

    03:07 Now if you need to cough, go ahead and hug that tightly and then go ahead and cough a few times for me Brandon.

    03:14 Perfect, thank you.

    03:15 So every time Brandon coughs like that, we really want him to encourage us to do this frequently and again making sure he's splinting by hugging that pillow tightly against the incision.

    03:26 Now, this is going to vary on the number of times that Brandon needs to do this based on your assessment and also the physician order.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Postoperative Splinting (Nursing) by Samantha Rhea, MSN, RN is from the course Postoperative Care (Nursing).

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Hugging a pillow to prevent pain during coughing after a surgical procedure
    2. Not moving to prevent pain
    3. Not moving a specific limb
    4. A procedure that protects a painful area from moving
    5. A device that protects a painful area from moving
    1. Educate the client on why they should splint anytime they cough
    2. Tell the client to hug a pillow
    3. Tell the client to cough
    4. Tell the client to perform splinting anytime they cough
    1. Based on the nursing assessment and physician order
    2. Based on the physical therapy assessment
    3. Based on the patient's comfort level
    4. Based on the occupational therapy assessment and physician order

    Author of lecture Postoperative Splinting (Nursing)

     Samantha Rhea, MSN, RN

    Samantha Rhea, MSN, RN

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