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comfort in surgery?

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by HEADintheCLOUDS, May 16, 2008.

  1. HEADintheCLOUDS

    HEADintheCLOUDS Banned

    Feb 24, 2008
    hey guys...........just got finsihed shadowing a surgeon.......the surgery lasted 6.5 hours...uugh. Needless to say my feet hurt and when i attempted to flex my knee joint using my hamstrings my leg seemed to have rigor mortis.

    What can I do for both my feet and my legs.....also my lower back hurt...Advice!!
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  3. J ROD

    J ROD Watch my TAN walk!! Rocket Scientist Physician Pharmacist Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Aug 1, 2005
    working on my tan......
    Better shoes, compression hoses, ASA/APAP/Ibuprofen, move more/eat less, shadow a different kind of physician, bring a chair, etc....

    There are many things one can do, lol!!
  4. Flopotomist

    Flopotomist I love the Chicago USPS 7+ Year Member

    May 22, 2005
    Here are a few thoughts on body mechanics that might help:

    1. Don't "lock" your knees. Keep them slightly bent, and do a few mini little squats during the surgery.

    2. Rest one foot on an elevated surface (eg a stool). Alternate feet every few minutes.

    3. Shoes with a lot of support. This is key.
  5. excalibur

    excalibur Member 10+ Year Member

    Oct 15, 2005
    Become the'd get to sit down
  6. *Shoes with lots of arch support
    *Don't lock knees
    *Try to shift weight around periodically throughout the case
    *Ibuprofen pre-op if necessary
    *Support hose (e.g. Jobst TED hose) may help
    *Stretching and strengthening lower back, hamstrings and calves will do wonders
    *Maintain good posture during case

    *Practice, practice, practice - when I was an MS-III a 2-3-hour case was about my limit. By the MS-IV year I could handle up to 5-6 hours at a time in the OR. Now I can easily go 6-8 if necessary.
  7. TheRealMD

    TheRealMD "The Mac Guy" 5+ Year Member

    May 23, 2007
    Houston, Texas
    6-8 sounds daunting.
  8. ZagDoc

    ZagDoc Ears, Noses, and Throats 10+ Year Member

    Jul 12, 2007
    Anyone ever tried a back brace for the OR? Thats where most of my arch and knee pain seems to shoot to on a particularly lengthy case.
  9. Don't worry, you've got plenty of time! When I was a pre-med I wouldn't have been able to last 1-2 hours standing in the OR.

    My longest case ever was 19 hours (about a year ago), and even then I survived.
  10. TerpMD

    TerpMD 2+ Year Member

    Sep 26, 2007
    UMD 2010

    Get Danskos. I loooove mine!
  11. smq123

    smq123 John William Waterhouse Administrator Physician SDN Advisor 10+ Year Member

    Jan 9, 2006
    Wouldn't a back brace be really hot? A sterile gown can be stifling enough, but a back brace added onto that (plus the possibility of lead in urology, vascular, etc.) would be really, really warm. And that would increase your chances of passing out (much to the amusement of everyone else in the room) exponentially.
  12. lildave2586

    lildave2586 5+ Year Member

    May 12, 2008
    The ville
    So what do you do when your going on the 10th hour of a case and peristalsis gets the best of your colon? I've always wondered what people did when they get a case of the ****s during a big case.
  13. HEADintheCLOUDS

    HEADintheCLOUDS Banned

    Feb 24, 2008
    which type did you get?
  14. IcedTea

    IcedTea Nuthin But A G Thang Baby 2+ Year Member

    Apr 18, 2008
    Tha hood
    Breathe, Stretch, Shake!! lol. I got that from a song title by the rapper Mase.

    Anyway just wear comfortable kicks, shift weight around, and don't think about your discomfort. Focus on the surgery and try to make yourself engrossed in it even if you really aren't. Oh yeah and some other posters have said don't lock your knees, that's good advice. Just wiggle your legs around from time to time and crack your neck lol

    And if the OR team is cool and not so uptight then you can do a little dance if you like (Salsa:thumbup:). Just make sure they are COOL.

    The OR personnel at the hospital I go to are totally tubular. They talk, laugh,and joke around when doing an operation. And one of the surgeons there is so awesome as well. He blasts loud club music when he's doing surgeries.
  15. sentrosi

    sentrosi INTARWEB USER 5+ Year Member

    Jun 28, 2004
    Yeah. I'm wondering this too. What happens when you really have to go? Do you just have to excuse yourself and then scrub back in?
  16. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member Physician Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Dec 20, 2004
    If you cannot hold it, you have to excuse yourself. Whether you get to scrub back in is up to the attending. But nasty personalities are not rare and some won't let you back, and will give you a hard time about your lack of intestinal endurance, maybe even give you a nickname. Moral of the story -- do what you can to take care of these details before you step into the OR.
    FWIW, an 8 hour surgery is not a record and in some fields is the norm -- complications can push it far longer. Comfortable shoes are key. As is not drinking a big pot of coffee before you start. Or else you'll be dancing around once they start irrigating.
  17. roja

    roja 7+ Year Member

    Oct 20, 2003
    NYC--->San Francisco
    Wow. I am so glad I don't have your job.

    The advice here is solid. Surgery involves a lot of time on your feet, and not just in the OR. (rounding, etc).

    But the hints work. At the start of surgery, I was 6mos pregnant and had my child 3 days AFTER my surgery rotation was over. The last 3 weeks were on vascular and I stood for 5-6 hours at a time. (helped that I :love: vascular).

    Keeping one foot elevated a little really helps. Just ask for a stool. don't lock the knees. good shoes.
  18. TerpMD

    TerpMD 2+ Year Member

    Sep 26, 2007
    UMD 2010
    I got these. The oiled ones are a nice too and I may get those in brown eventually. The one thing is the sizing is crazy, so I ended up being a full size larger than my actual foot. Zappos lets you ship and return for free, so it wasn't a big deal. I couldn't find them any cheaper.

    If anyone wants the guys version

    They have them at allheart too, which if you get a coupon you might be able to get them cheaper.
  19. IHeartNerds

    IHeartNerds 2+ Year Member

    Jun 1, 2007
    Longest I've been in was 23 hours. It hurt.

    It's bad when you start becoming sleep deprived FROM the case, rather than call the day before.

    And no, I don't think any one person stayed scrubbed for the entire case...

    Major recommendation for the pre-op NSAID and either Danskos or Keens.

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