Archive November 2017 XVIII, No. 11

Ideas That Work: Drink Up

Ensure Post-op Patients Stay Hydrated

Cheryl Williams, RD (left) and Peggy Martino, RN, MSN THIRST QUENCHER Cheryl Williams, RD (left), bariatric surgery program coordinator, and Peggy Martino, RN, MSN, program director of surgical services, developed a novel approach to monitor patients' water intake.

Ensure Post-op Patients Stay Hydrated

Bariatric patients typically aren't thirsty after surgery, but they must drink during the initial recovery phase to prevent dehydration. Our staff wasn't certain that patients were drinking the intended goal of 48 ounces of water during each of the first 2 post-op days, but our nurses came up with a great idea to know how much water patients have consumed. They set aside 12 8-oz. water bottles for each patient and numbered the caps from 1 to 12 with a permanent marker. Patients must drink bottles 1-6 on post-op day 1 and bottles 7-12 on day 2. By numbering the bottle caps, our nurses know for certain that our patients are well hydrated.

Peggy Lennon, MSN, RN, NE-BC
Greenwich (Conn.) Hospitale

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