longest surgery?

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SophiaO

SophiaO

48 Posts

Ive been a surg tech for 11 years..and am going back to school for nursing....My longest case has been a 12 hour reconstruction of a 7 yr. old face after a dog attack. Make that 3 rottweilers. Her zygomatic arch was found behind the refridgerator..and sat on my back table in betadine. The saddest case ever and it still gives me nightmares! We saved her life, but I am sure that her life has forever changed. When the dogs went for her neck they got one of her jugular veins...this caused her to have a stroke. I actually called in my back up tech...because the amount of doctors out numbered me..so we were able to break ourselves. Ater 11 years of scrubbing I really only need one 30 min. break somewhere in my day...but man is it hard work...emotionally and physically!

Scrubby

Scrubby

Specializes in Operating Room Nursing. Has 6 years experience. 1,313 Posts

Longest case I scrubbed for was a 9 hour liver resection. It took so long because the liver tissue was pretty bad and just kept bleeding. We couldn't even use the CUSA on it because it caused too much bleeding. I was unable to go for a break even if I wanted to because of the blood loss.

If I had my way you would be relieved after 5 hours if requested. Studies show that the longer you scrub the more chance there is of getting a sharps injury, losing an instrument etc.

talaxandra

Specializes in Medical. 1 Article; 3,037 Posts

God, SophiaO - how hideous. That poor child.

When I did my student OR rotation I came on at 1300 to find the first CAGS case in chaos: the patient's aorta was somehow adhered to her sternum. A friend who was in theatre in the AM said that when the surgeon cut through the sternum and blood spurted eight feet into the air she could just feel everyone in the room think Oh, **** and freeze for what felt like ten minutes but must have been less than a second. When I got there they were still trying to repair the aorta, a tast they were still attempting when I left at 21:30. I walked past the family, outside ICU, on my way back to the student quarters. I heard they called it a day just after midnight, almost 19 hours after they started.

Edited by dianah
TOS

fracturenurse

fracturenurse

Specializes in 2 years school nurse, 15 in the OR!. Has 19 years experience. 200 Posts

Multi level spinal fusion. Granted the doctor is slower than a snail...We cut at 8 am and I left at 3...They finished around 10...

queenoftheor

queenoftheor

5 Posts

The longest case for me......a avm in the brain. Scrubbed in at 6:45 ,got lunch at 11:00,scrubbed back in @ 1135,I was on call so... got scrubbed out at 2130.....came back in the next morning scrubbed back in (same case) at 645....case finished at 1330. The pt did well. I had to take a 3 day weekend.

Marie_LPN, RN, LPN, RN

Specializes in 5 yrs OR, ASU Pre-Op 2 yr. ER. 12,126 Posts

Ahhhh, the already dead fem-pop. We had something like that last week, a fem thrombectomy...2 hours later a fasciotomy, then the surgeon says, I guess we should have done that first. Dead muscle....

PS we always prep both legs for fem-pops, fem-thrombectomies, etc for just in case.....

Sounds like someone we used to have here that did those. Sick as it sounds, his fem-pops were called fem-pop-chops because RARELY was the pt. NOT oming back for an amputation, despite the hours of surgery.

Marvie

Marvie

Specializes in OR. 143 Posts

I had an exceptionally long case one time...I had been at work at 6 AM until 3 pm then an emergency case came in and since I was the "on call" person I got to enjoy the surgery. It was a knee scope that ended up with a ruptured popliteal artery and a ton of blood loss, it was the messiest, most exhausting case ever. It ended at 545 am the following morning, and I was expected to do my shift that day. Then to top if off- my NM says to me that I "forgot" to clock out the day before...No, I explained, I was there all night. She didn't believe me until she spoke to the doctor. Yeah that was just a nightmare.

ORNurseAngie

ORNurseAngie

Specializes in Med/surg/tele/OR. 48 Posts

Diep flap's last forever, never done one myself but seen them last from 0730 am to midnight and then come back in the middle of the night because it doesn't take, sucks! The nurses and techs have break coverage until 11pm and the surgeon's provided that everything is going well take breaks every couple of hours.

Davidb RN

Davidb RN

2 Posts

7 hour spinal fusion, not huge, but not too bad given that I'm still in my new grad year. I think for the moment 7 hours is about as long as I can scrub for and still work productively and safely, though I am sure I will improve.

Longest I've been a part of (scout) was a 10h Occiput to T6 fusion for Brest cancer mets to give a lady enough stability to walk in her last couple of months. When we started the she was bed bound and wearing a brace 24/7, she is now apparently able to walk again and no longer requires the brace. These are the cases that make is all worth it.

Interestingly unlike most people here, most of our neuro team won't get scrubbed out, even though we all offer each other breaks every 4-5hours or so. we all like to see the case through to the end. Anyone else like that or are we just a bit odd?

SandraCVRN

SandraCVRN

Specializes in OR Hearts 10. Has 13 years experience. 597 Posts

Interestingly unlike most people here, most of our neuro team won't get scrubbed out, even though we all offer each other breaks every 4-5hours or so. we all like to see the case through to the end. Anyone else like that or are we just a bit odd?

Don't be martyrs, you NEED to take breaks/lunch. Your body needs it even if you don't think you need it. The only time we turn down a break if it during a critical time (mostly heart stuff, going on pump, etc). Our motto is, take it, you may not know when another one will come along.

ORTech2RN

ORTech2RN

Has 7 years experience. 109 Posts

A couple of spines that probably went 6 plus hours. Honorable mention to the Lap Nissen that a rookie surgeon did a few months back. Started at 10, and was going strong when I left at 4!

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