spine surgery/extremity strength

  1. We currently have a flow sheet we use for upper/lower extremity strengths for our spine surgery patients. However, it does not cover all spine levels, does anyone have one that covers all of them? Is there such a thing?

    What we use is pretty handy as it has pictures on the back as reference on how to do the check for our novice and float nursing staff. But, I think we can do better.

    The only other thing on the neuro spine assessments we chart is numbness/tingling (for all spine surgeries) and speech/swallowing (for c-spine's).
    Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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    About paprika88

    Joined: Mar '06; Posts: 13; Likes: 2
    Specialty: 22 year(s) of experience in Ortho/Neuro, Med/Surg


  3. by   leachnh
    can you e-mail me the flow sheet you use for assessments on patients with prior c-spine surgery dealing with numbness and tingling?
  4. by   dorimar
    In Joanne HIckey's neurosurgical book 5th edition, there is a sheet for nursing assessment of spinal cord function. (page 438 & 439). It covers motor function on 1 page and sensory function on page 2. It looks at L&R. . Starts with upper arm abduction, upper arm adduction, elbow flexion, elbow extension, wrist flex, wrist extend, finger flex, finger extend, etc...all the way down to toe.Strength is documented from 0 (complete paralysis) to 5(normal power). then still on the motor page it looks at deep tendon reflexes (0 to 4+) & superficail reflexes (present or absent) The sensory page lookes a dermatomes -- Position /vibration and pain.
    Last edit by dorimar on Apr 11, '06
  5. by   leachnh
    thanks. does this apply to emergency nurses as well?
  6. by   dorimar

    It could apply to ED as well, but quite frankly, i've never seen an ED nurse go into any such depth ( I think with the docs there all the time they just leave it to them). But I don't know, maybe i'll be pleasantly surprised by another poster.