Postoperative care is critical for any patient who’s had surgery. The issue with this is that some people are discharged without ever having the monitoring that’s essential for spotting potential problems early. Postoperative monitoring doesn’t have a universal timeline. Instead, the type of surgery, patient’s health, and similar factors have to determine how long the patient needs to be monitored.
There are several things that nurses should watch for as a patient begins their recovery after surgery.
Vital signs are important after a surgical procedure, especially if the patient was put under anesthesia. Certain changes in vital signs, such as an increased body temperature or a high heart rate, can signal that something is amiss. Respiratory distress is also possible after a surgical procedure, so checking the breath rate and oxygenation levels is important.
There’s a risk of infection at the surgical site. Watching it carefully in the postoperative period is important. This is also a time when the nursing staff can look for signs that the incision wasn’t closed properly. Infections at the surgical site require medical care to avoid serious issues such as sepsis.
Checking for specific abilities, such as the ability to handle basic bodily functions, can help nurses to determine how the patient is faring after surgery.
Any patient who suffers from any issue due to lax postoperative care may opt to pursue a claim for medical malpractice. These cases focus on recovering the damages caused by harm from negligent medical providers. There are time limits for these cases, so be sure that you take action quickly after you realize that the problems you’re dealing with are due to negligence.