Archive July 2018 XIX, No. 7

Ideas That Work: No More Heavy Lifting

Gel Wedge Positions GI Patients So Your Nurses Won't Have To

Take a Load Off
TAKE A LOAD OFF Your GI nurses will thank you when you show them how to use a gel wedge to position obese colonoscopy patients.

Endoscopy nurses sometimes have to do some heavy lifting during a colonoscopy. Literally. Imagine an obese patient in the left lateral position. When the endoscopist inserts the colonoscope, a nurse has to reach over the patient and pull the abdomen upward and hold it, sometimes for as long as 10 minutes. Sometimes, she'll have to press the abdomen to facilitate scope passage. This can cause significant back pain and fatigue to the nurse.

We wanted to find a way to ease some of that backbreaking pain. And the solution was right in our own OR: a gel wedge that we use to position patients for surgery. The gel positioner has worked wonders on our nurses' backs and our GI efficiency.

Susan Fetzer, RN, PhD
Southern New Hampshire Medical Center
Nashua, N.H.

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