Active Cooling Vest System For Surgeons In The OR

What is an active cooling vest? 

A cooling vest is a piece of equipment designed to cool a person down. Cooling vests are used by doctors, athletes, industrial workers, working dogs, individuals with Multiple Sclerosis or hypohidrotic ectodermal dysplasia, race care drivers, and military personnel.

Active cooling vests and systems require some form of power, electricity or battery, to operate. This type of cooling technology provides continuous cooling to lower the body’s core temperature by circulating cold water via a cooler through a tube to the vest.

CoolVest System 

Although cooling vests are used by a variety of people for a variety of uses, the CoolVest System has been designed specifically for surgeons working in the OR. Staying cool in the OR is an important consideration for surgeons, especially when performing pediatric surgeries, burn or trauma cases. The CoolVest System will keep you cool and focused – even when the OR has been warmed to AORN (recommended OR temperature 68-73 Fahrenheit) and Joint Commission Standards. When performing surgical procedures where the surgeon is exerting a great deal of physical effort, body temperatures can easily rise while covered with sterile gowns and lead aprons, not to mention the heat emitted from the OR lights.

CoolVest System Features

  • Lightweight vest made with hospital-grade ventilated nylon for maximum comfort.
  • Variable flow control and quick-dry disconnects for ease-of-use.
  • Choice of styles & sizes from small – XXXL
  • Variable hose lengths for freedom of motion.
  • Up to 70 feet of patented, thin wall, no-kink tubing for use under lead aprons.
  • Low-profile cooling unit for easy storage.
  • Wheeled cart with handle for convenient portability.
  • Single and dual vest capacity.
  • Heavy duty pump system.
  • Limited Lifetime Warranty with Free Loaner Program
  • UL Listing guarantees the highest quality standards for use in the OR.

Single-Surgeon System Includes

  • One premium CoolVest (Small-XXXL)
  • 8 foot insulated supply hose with quick disconnects
  • Protective hose cover
  • T-Drain kit
  • Maintenance additive (16 ounce bottle)
  • Stainless steel cart with hospital grade wheels
  • UL Listed cooler with variable flow 110V pump

A Dual-Surgeon System is also available and comes with two premium CoolVests. 

Remain Alert And Focused

The CoolVest System offers variable flow control, which allows you to regulate the fluid flow to your personal comfort level so that you won’t perspire, suffer fatigue or lose concentration. No matter how long or complex the surgery, you’ll remain alert an focused.

Stay Cool And Comfortable

The lightweight vest is made with hospital-grade ventilated nylon for maximum comfort. Available in sizes ranging from small to XXXL the CoolVest is lightweight, comfortable, and durable for OR conditions. Comfort is essential when working under intense pressure and performing hundreds of high-risk procedures each year. The CoolVest will help surgeons and medical staff stay cool and focused while working in the OR. Make sure to visit our Surgeon Cooling section on our main site for more CoolVest products.

How To Choose The Right Exam Glove Dispenser

Choosing the right exam glove box dispenser is an important step in keeping your medical facility organized and promoting sound infection control practices. Exam glove box dispensers, sometimes referred to as PPE dispensers, eliminate the need to carry exam gloves in pockets, loose in drawers or on countertops. There are several factors to consider when selecting the right exam glove box dispenser. The type of facility and the amount of traffic your facility or department receives are two of the top considerations. The application and location of the dispenser will determine what size capacity is needed, the type of material, mounting orientation and any additional features.

Application

In high traffic locations such as emergency departments, operating rooms and trauma units where exam glove usage is critical, keeping a safe stocking level is crucial to staying compliant with infection control policies.  Selecting a quad or four box exam glove dispenser ensures that your department will always have sufficient inventory on hand at all times. Hospitals with a large number of staff will typically want to choose a quad or triple box exam glove dispenser that can accommodate multiple sizes.  For more specialized infection control applications, the Microban Anti-Microbial exam glove box holder is ideal for use in cleanrooms, hospitals, and microbiological work areas.

Capacity

There are four common exam glove box dispenser configurations: single, double, triple, and quad to meet your facilities needs. Some of the dispensers are designed to be dedicated exam glove box holders while other dispensers, like the FlexHold quad glove/mask holder have been designed to hold various types of PPE supply boxes. There are also specialty exam glove dispenser boxes that incorporate an additional pocket to hold hand sanitizer.

Material

Exam glove box dispensers are available in multiple substrates: acrylic, powder coated steel wire, epoxy coated steel wire, stainless steel, white steel, and high-impact polystyrene. Acrylic dispensers are clear and durable allowing for quick glove identification and easy refilling. The powder coated and epoxy coated wire dispensers feature a see-through construction which allows for easy identification of glove sizes. The durable stainless steel dispensers are long lasting and safe to clean with most bleach solutions. The powder coated steel dispensers offer a durable finish and an open design which allows for easy identification of glove sizes. Dispensers constructed from high impact polystyrene (HIPS) are durable and are resistant to harsh cleaning solutions.

Mounting Orientation

Exam glove box dispensers are available in multiple mounting configurations. Some dispensers are designed with two-way keyholes that allow for a dual mounting option so that the dispenser can be mounted vertically or horizontally. Dispensers may also come with suction cups that allow for mounting on glass surfaces. In addition to the wall mount option, many of the dispensers can also be placed on a counter or tabletop which will keep glove boxes organized and improve the utilization of exam gloves in your facility.

Features 

Unique features may be necessary depending on the specific location and application. Let’s take a look at some of the unique features available. There are Dispensers with locking lids which offer an added level of protection for safely and securely storing exam gloves while still allowing for easy access. Most acrylic dispensers have finger holes located on one end to make refilling quick and easy. There are several types of loading configurations including, top, side, and bottom loading. Some dispensers have spring loaded back flaps that keeps glove boxes up front and firmly in place, preventing smaller boxes from sliding. The FlexHold quad glove/mask holder has a unique bottom loading, adjustable clamp design that adjusts to a variety of different sized PPE boxes including, gloves, mop caps, ear defenders, face masks, and shoe covers.

There are a variety of exam glove dispensers to choose from and that is why it is important to take the criteria listed above into consideration before making your decision. Purchasing exam glove dispensers might seem like a fairly straightforward process but with the amount of options available it can make the decision more difficult then originally anticipated. If you may have any questions regarding how to choose the right exam glove please feel free to leave a comment below or contact us directly at info@universalmedicalinc.com.

Stabilizing Upper Extremities During Surgical Procedures

The process of stabilizing patients during surgical procedures is crucial. Being able to properly stabilize and position your patient will directly correlate to the success of that operation. To ensure your patient’s upper body and arms are positioned correctly, surgical arm boards are a necessary addition to your exam table.

By properly positioning a patient’s arm on one of our surgical arm boards, you are reducing the risk of injury. Positioning injuries can take place during surgeries for many reasons. These injuries can include hypotension, hypoxia, direct nerve injury from compression, etc. When positioning patients it’s also important to be aware of patients with existing injuries, since they are higher risk. These patients would include those with peripheral nerve injury, peripheral vascular disease, obesity or diabetes.

Patients experience a higher level of comfort with upper extremity support. With surgical arm boards, the physician can easily adjust the patient’s arm to facilitate access and manipulation during procedures. This keeps the patient safe and allows better access for the physician and medical staff.

The ASA (American Society of Anesthesiologists) recommend the following for positioning upper extremities:

  • In the supine position, arm should be limited to 90०.
  • Patients with arm positioned using a surgical arm board should be positioned in way to reduce pressure on the ulnar nerve of the humerus.

Surgical arm boards are excellent additions to your exam table in order to prevent patient injury and increase comfort level. If you have any questions, please comment in the box below!

Is It Time To Replace Your Table Pad On Your OR Table?

Is it time to replace your foam table pads on your OR table? If there are any rips or tears your answer should most certainly be yes! If your operating room table is used frequently, it may be a good idea to seek replacements table pads to ensure maximum patient comfort.

This post will highlight a few important factors to consider when looking for replacement table pads.

  • Start with identifying what type of OR table you have. Table pads are first broken down into the table brand and model. For example, we sell table pads for the following OR tables: Liebel Flarsheim, Steris, Siemens/Maquet, Skytron, OEC, Midmark, Shampaine/MDT/Getinge and Amsco.
  • Determine the foam pad thickness you are interested in. Keep in mind, the thicker the foam pad typically increases patient comfort. Most table pads are offered in a 2″, 3″, 4″ or 5″ thickness.
  • Then we recommend identifying the types of applications and procedures your OR table is used for. Determine if a majority of the tables use is for lengthy, time-consuming procedures vs. shorter procedures. For lengthy procedures, purchasing the foam table pads with the added top gel layer may be best for patient comfort. Foam table pads with a top gel layer may potentially prevent the development of pressure sores that transpire during lengthy procedures.
  • Another consideration is the table pad cover. Basic models are fluid resistant and the seams are sewn using a waterfall technology. The models with welded covers are fluid proof, meaning the seams are welded for a fluid proof seal. If your OR table frequently experiences bodily fluids, the welded cover is most likely your best option. For infection control purposes, you cannot allow fluids to absorb into the foam underneath the cover.

With our assortment of high-quality foam table pads you can ensure patient comfort during what is most likely a physically and emotionally trying procedure. Creating a high level of comfort for your patients is essential. A relaxed patient is much less likely to suffer from muscle tension, stiffness and other potentially injurious conditions. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to share your thoughts in the comment box below!

Why Your Surgical Inventory Count Is So Important

Oftentimes surgical instruments can be accidentally thrown away, misplaced or lost on the operating room floor. In worst case, surgical instruments can be accidentally left behind inside a patient’s body following a surgery. Many believe that by implementing a thorough surgical inventory count process you will decrease reported foreign object (RFO) findings inside patients and will also reduce cost for lost inventory in the operating room.

Not only can retained surgical instruments risk your patient’s safety but it also runs the possibility of costing your medical facility a lot of money in the long term.

By establishing required inventory count guidelines in your facility you can eliminate the possibility of leaving surgical instruments behind. Hospitals and medical facilities will make their operating rooms safer for patients, more productive for surgeons, nurses and OR management and will produce less risk for hospital administrators. Depending on your facility’s inventory system, it is always important to keep a few basic rules in mind.

  • Initial count of surgical tools should match your final count.
  • Counting practices should be standardized across all operating rooms within a facility.
  • It is common that new tools can be added to a surgery, in which case these tools should be added to the count sheet or tracking system for final count purposes.
  • The OR team should know who is performing the inventory count prior to the start of surgery. It is typically performed by two or more people (circulator nurse, scrub nurse, technician, etc.) to ensure accuracy.
  • The surgery should not be reported as complete until the final inventory count is done and all surgical tools are accounted for.

There are many products that will assist in retrieving lost tools that may have been dropped on the floor. For example, the operating room attractor magnet can be used to easily pick up metal tools. This device can be very useful in the operating room since many surgical tools, such as suture needles and tips, can be extremely small in size and difficult to find. The operating room attractor magnet can pick up these objects from the operating floor or from underneath objects using its high lifting capacity of ferrous metal.

Standardized counting practices of your OR’s surgical tools will be beneficial to both the medical facility and patients. If you have any questions or comments regarding the importance of your surgical inventory count in the OR, please let us know below.

Retained Surgical Instruments In The Operating Room

A retained surgical instrument simply means that a surgical item was accidentally left behind in a patient’s body during surgery. Such incidences are suspected to be commonly under reported and are considered to be a preventable medical error.

What types of surgical instruments are being left behind? The list of possible retained surgical instruments is large including needles, clamps, scalpels, sponges, towels, scissors, tweezers, forceps, scopes, measuring devices, suction tips and tubes, etc. A surgeon is estimated to use between 250-300 surgical tools throughout a surgery. This number can drastically increase depending on the type of surgery and length of surgery time.

The contributing factors leading to the misplacement of surgical tools left behind inside a patient’s body can vary. Many consider that human factors such as fatigue for medical staff, chaotic environments and lack of tools for the inventory process have directly resulted in the loss of expensive surgical tools.

The effect of losing a surgical instrument in a patient’s body during surgery can range from essentially harmless to life threatening. Patients can experience infections, punctured organs and blood vessels, additional surgeries and other medical complications. The effect that this type of incident can have on a hospital or healthcare facility can be very serious. This can include possible legal ramifications or a high cost in lost equipment.

There are many products that will help assist your staff in retrieving lost tools. Surgeons, nurses and technicians oftentimes use radiopaque sponges and towels. Radiopaque items can be detected by an x-ray, which presents the OR team another way of detecting lost surgical items inside a patient’s body.

Remember that leaving behind surgical tools in a patient’s body after surgery can be prevented by implementing extra safety precautions throughout your facility. If you have any questions or comments about retained surgical instruments, please let us know below!

Making Pressure Sores A Thing Of The Past In The Operating Room

Preventing pressure sores is not an easy task in the operating room.  However, with the right education and understanding of patient positioning you can help to prevent these “Never Events”.  For those not familiar with the term “never events” it is an occurrence in a health care setting that is preventable .  Never events range from safety issues to organizational issues but on top of the list are pressure ulcers acquired after admission to the facility.

Surgical pressure sores occur on a patient during a surgery when there is insufficient blood flow to skin tissue. This lack of blood flow is caused by the pressure of the patient’s own weight while lying on a surface. It is crucial for for the patients safety that proper measures are taken to allow for blood flow to skin tissue while a patient is in surgery. The two most common factors related to the potential for pressure sore injuries is the age of the patient and the length of time the patient is on the operating room table.

While most OR tables are equipped with foam table pads, these seemingly soft surfaces are not enough to prevent pressure sores from forming. It is essential that viscoelastic polymer gels be used to reduce the pressure especially in areas of the body that are more prone to sores.

The development of pressure ulcers is more common in bony prominences of the body. Depending on the position of the patient during the surgical procedure the bony prominences will be in different areas of the body. Some common areas of concern are the heels and elbows when a patient is lying on their back during a procedure. Fortunately pressure relieving gel manufacturers have designed products for the prone areas to aid in the prevention of sores.

Making use of other techniques to reduce pressure sores, such as repositioning the patient cannot always be done which is why it is crucial to have the appropriate pressure reducing surface in place. The American National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel (NPUAP) has an excellent quick reference guide that outlines in detail how to prevent pressure sores from forming, not only in the operating room but also in other areas of medical care.

Pressure sores can be prevented in the operating room as long as nurses and doctors in assess a patients risks properly, prior to the procedure. The use of pressure relieving gel will help medical staff properly prepare their patients for long surgical procedures where a patient is most at risk. Understanding how pressure sores form and how they can be prevented is the only way those working in operating rooms will be able to stop this never event from happening.