Operating rooms were not always as specialized as they are now. In the early days of medicine, many operations were performed with limited help from machines, which often resulted in more risks, diseases, and deaths.
Now, advancements in technology have transformed the healthcare industry. Nowadays, healthcare professionals rely on various technologically advanced equipment to perform different procedures and operations. These specialized equipment are more efficient, reduce the risk of mistakes, provide better safety, and make the work of surgeons easier.
While each type of surgery may require different specialized machines, some are essential for all procedures. In this article, we’ll discuss a few essential equipment that must be present in an operating room.
A code cart is a moveable unit that contains life-saving medication and equipment required during emergencies. IV fluids, defibrillators, and intubation materials are a few examples of the equipment in a code cart. They are mostly found in easily accessible places in a healthcare facility.
Many specialty carts are also found in other hospital departments, along with emergency rooms. For example, Ventaire endoscopy carts contain all types of endoscopes to perform procedures like cystoscopy, bronchoscopy, and colonoscopy. Similarly, isolation carts are used to transport equipment for patients kept in isolation wards.
Vital Signs Monitor
A vital signs monitor consistently measures basic body functions like blood pressure, temperature, and pulse rate. It is crucial for operating room equipment because it keeps surgeons updated about the patient’s condition. It enables them to act quickly when the measurements deviate from the standard.
It is essential to maintain the blood pressure of the patient during surgery. In case of a hemorrhage, the blood pressure can drop rapidly, and the monitor can ring a beeping sound to notify the surgeon about the complication. Therefore allowing the surgical team to respond quickly and mitigate the problem. Similarly, a dropping pulse rate can also be dangerous if not dealt with immediately. A vital signs monitor significantly reduces risks and ensures patient safety.
It is safe to say that it would be difficult to perform surgery without a surgical table. It is a specialized equipment with various features, like armrests, headrests, adjustable height, and pressure relief pads. The table can be adjusted based on the type of procedure being performed. Therefore, it makes it convenient for the surgeons and comfortable for the patients.
Based on the type of procedure, customized surgical tables are also available. For example, some surgical tables are made to maintain the patient’s body temperature during surgery, and some specialized ones are even compatible with MRI machines and provide real-time imaging results. These special tables can be used by surgeons performing operations requiring a stable body temperature or quick images of the body or organs.
Laryngeal Mask Airways
A laryngeal mask is another essential piece of equipment that helps keep the patient’s airways open. Many operating room procedures require the patient to remain unconscious during the procedure. During the operation, the patient’s airways can get blocked due to various reasons like pressure on the airways, aspiration, bronchospasm, or surgical sponges accidentally entering the airway. Therefore, ensuring that the airways remain clear and open throughout the process is crucial.
LMAs are often inserted through the mouth down into the throat, and oxygen is provided via a breathing circuit outside the body. They are quite safe and effective and are regularly employed in various hospital units, including ICUs, emergency rooms, and operating rooms.
Ultrasound machines are imaging equipment that utilizes sound waves to produce images of the body’s internal organs. These machines are commonly used in routine check-ups and offer a non-invasive way to image internal organs. However, they are also a piece of essential equipment for the operating room because they quickly provide surgeons with images of organs that may be obstructed from their view.
Real-time images of the internal anatomy assist healthcare professionals with operating on them more precisely and in less time. Ultrasound machines are often employed during general, neurosurgery, or cardiothoracic surgery.
During any surgery, it is common for blood or other body fluids to pool up in the body cavity. This pool of fluid can make it difficult for the operating personnel to get a clear view of the organs, veins, and tissues. Therefore, a suction apparatus removes all the fluid and offers a clearer view to the surgeon. A suction apparatus can also supply bodily fluids, such as irrigating wounds with saline solution, to speed up healing.
The suction apparatus essentially creates a vacuum and draws all the fluids out of the patient’s body. It is a relatively simple device with a pump or motor and a few catheters to insert into the body.
Every procedure performed in a healthcare facility requires a variety of specialized equipment. However, all procedures require some basic medical equipment, without which many risks will be involved. Therefore, ensuring that all operating rooms have the basic but essential equipment is important to provide patients with better, safer, and more efficient care.