As a Theatre nurse, you will be involved in all 4 stages of the operation:
- Pre-Op (Pre-Assessment)
As a theatre nurse, you may specialise in only one of the above 4 areas or as is more likely with day surgery you will rotate through them all.
If you are working in the Preoperative stage it is your responsibility to carry out the preoperative assessment and ensure your patient is fully informed about the operation including all of the risks and benefits as well as making sure that they are healthy enough for the surgery. It is at this stage that the patient will be able to ask any questions they may have and to prepare themselves for the operation mentally as well as physically.
It is your role at this point to assist the Anaesthetist with anything they may ask and to prepare any specialist equipment, tools or drugs that may be necessary. You will also stay with the patient and assess them immediately prior to surgery.
During the surgery, you will be responsible for all of the surgical instruments, swabs and equipment, for preparing the necessary and complex instructions and equipment including any microscopes, endoscopes and lasers, working with the surgeon to provide them with instruments, needles, swabs and other material as is required and to act as link between the surgical team and all other parts of the theatre and hospital.
Following on from the surgery theatre nurses continue to care for the patient by monitoring the patient`s health, offering the patient care and support immediately upon arrival to the post anaesthetic care unit, Providing the appropriate care and treatment until your patient has recovered from the effects of the anaesthetic and or surgery and finally you will assess the patient to ensure they are well enough to go back to the ward.