Preoperative Education: CERVICAL SPINE SURGERY

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1 Preoperative Education: CERVICAL SPINE SURGERY 1

2 Dear Patient, In order to make your hospital stay as comfortable as possible, we have prepared this informational packet for you designed to outline and explain hospital monitoring equipment, nursing care and procedures, and intensive care unit / recovery room / floor routines. Various members of the Neurosurgical Team are always available to you. Your Neurosurgeon directs your overall care. Nurses monitor your progress in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), recovery room, and on the floor. Nurse Practitioners act as liaisons and coordinators of your care. Additionally, Physical Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Speech Therapists, and Social Workers assist us and you in optimizing your recovery. You will also be given written instructions upon your discharge to help in your transition from the hospital to the community. All of us are here to help make your hospital stay as brief and stress-free as possible. Best wishes for a speedy recovery. Yours truly, The Neurosurgical Team 2

3 Neurosurgical Team ATTENDING PHYSICIAN ICU/PACU/Floor for nursing monitoring and care Nurse Practitioners to liaison and coordinate Social Workers Auxiliary Staff Physical Therapists Occupational Therapists Physician consults when needed Your Hospital Course Surgery: Cervical Spinal Surgery DAY 1: OPERATING ROOM FOR PROCEDURE Recovery Room until recovered from anesthesia Transfer to Neurological Floor DAY 2: CONTINUE YOUR RECOVERY Discharge to home with instructions, prescriptions 3

4 Preoperative Education: CERVICAL SPINAL SURGERY What is it? Spinal surgery is done to relieve pressure on the nerves or cord of the spine and decrease neck pain, caused by many different reasons. Spine surgery is also performed to improve the stability of the spine. Pre-operative: AT HOME Prepare your home for your return (see handout). Review all of your medications with your doctor, so you know which ones to take on the morning of surgery. You will receive instructions about eating or drinking from the hospital. In most cases, you cannot have anything to eat or drink after 12 midnight the night before surgery. The day before and the morning of surgery, you should shower. Your doctor will discuss arranging time off from work and activity limitations. Prepare to bring a good pair of sneakers to the hospital with you. AT THE HOSPITAL You will have medications through an intravenous line (IV), during and after surgery. You will receive medication in the tube to help you relax. General anesthesia will then be given, so that you sleep throughout the surgery. 4

5 In the Operating Room You will be asleep during surgery and you will be closely watched throughout the procedure. A special tube may be placed in the artery of your wrist to observe your blood pressure during surgery. Cardiac monitor stickers will be placed on your chest to monitor your heart during surgery. These will remain on your chest during your recovery room stay. For certain procedures, a specialist will be in the operating room to monitor function of your nervous system during your procedure. This maximizes your safety. Meanwhile Your family will be able to wait for you in the waiting room on the main level of the hospital. Your Neurosurgeon will talk to your family in the waiting room after surgery is complete. There is a receptionist in the waiting area. Your family should speak to the receptionist before coming in to visit with you. 5

6 In the Recovery Room You will awaken with a bandage on your neck and you may be wearing a cervical collar. The nurses will check the bandage often. It may be removed in 48 hours. The nurses will check your movement, strength and sensation while watching you closely in the recovery room. Vinyl inflatable sleeves are placed on the calves of your legs. Sometimes snug elastic stockings are placed under them. This will help maintain circulation in your legs while you are on bed rest. You may have a sore throat from the breathing tube used during surgery. You may also have a full feeling when you swallow. This will disappear in a day. Discomfort from this procedure is usually treated with a pain pump or oral pain medicine. 6

7 On the Nurses Unit (NEUROLOGICAL FLOOR) You will be transferred to a hospital bed from the recovery room. The doctor and nurse will watch your clinical status for changes, including your movements and strength. Your medication will be adjusted according to your symptoms. You will start to get out of bed with the help of the nurses. If needed, you will receive physical therapy. Taking Care at Home You will get some tips on how to care for yourself at home. You will need to know any limits to diet, activity, driving, lifting. Your medicines will be reviewed with you. You also need to know when to call the doctor. This fact sheet provides information which is general in nature. It does not take the place of the advice of your physician or health care provider. Talk to your health care provider for further explanations or clarification about this topic. 7

8 8 Telephone Numbers Facts Questions

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