Originally posted by shodobe
carcha, your asking for trouble if you don't go by what chartleypj says. I remember an item in the news not to long ago about a patient that had a ribbon left in them. I swear it was from England. Mike
Mike, the same exact thing happened a bit closer to home--Washington state. Had a malleable (ribbon) left in during a laparotomy. So weird to imagine that happening, since a ribbon is most commonly used like a visceral fish--while CLOSING. Can't see how it could have been left in, unless the patient was REALLY obese. Plaintiff (patient) got a huge settlement.
I hate doing freakin' instrument counts, and I ALWAYS know what is on my mayo at any given time, because I keep the very minimum up there, and I only put instruments up in pairs--not odd numbers--and I placece whatever is no longer being used into a soak pan of water--so it is clearly visible, and also accessible, in the rare event it is needed again.
However, now that newer scrubs tend to put ALL their instruments needed for the entire case on their Mayo stands at the beginning, and keep adding more instruments TO, not taking away, from the field, I think that instrument counts have become a necessity. Too bad, because in the '70s and '80s no one ever did instrument counts, and I never heard of any retained instruments, EVER.
You know what you DO have to be careful about? Surgeons that put a blue towel in the pelvis. This is often during done during radical prostatectomies, and is a practice that I am highly uncomfortable with--you have to write it on the count board and make SURE it is out before closing. Usually only urologists do it, and it seems to be done about everywhere I have ever worked. No big deal, I guess, as long as you are careful to CYA by making sure that towel really DOES get removed.