Arm Position/Open heart

  1. Open inquiry to Open Heart nurses.
    How do you position your patients arms for surgery? Our Doc trained at THI where arms are positioned above the head on Wedges and taped to the arm board. This bothers me, as well as some of the other staff members. But he is adament that this is acceptable and standard practice in other areas. Is anyone else out there doing this?
    thanks so much R-SIS
  2. Visit RockieSis profile page

    About RockieSis

    Joined: Jul '01; Posts: 36
    OR RN Hearts


  3. by   zambezi
    I am not an OR nurse, but i have watched a few open heart surgeries. I think that the arms were either out to the sides or down by the body, but definately not over the head in our hospital. Sorry I don't have any solid info.
  4. by   love4nsg
    i'v only seen one OPEN HEART surg. and her arms were placed @ her side and secured so they would not fall off the table
  5. by   POPRN
    we pad and tuck the arms at the sides, we are careful to make sure the arm with A-line is in proper position. I have done open hearts for 9 years. one hospital used towels to pad elbow and the other used foam pads. Hope this helps.
  6. by   infinity
    policy and procedure and of course AORN guidelines should prevail over a physician-I would get your manager, director and patient care committee involved. This could quite possibly account for arm numbness and tingling that many heart patients experience--including my husband. I work in surgery btw.
  7. by   Circl8r
    At St. Elsewhere we pad and tuck the arms for all CV cases. Depending on the doc, we either use foam eggcrate padding or a silicone pad.
  8. by   huckfinn
    Always tucked at side bilat. I never thought there was any other way to do it for 18 yrs. now.