Nursing Care in Cath Lab

  • Eliana ZarlengaEmail author


From 1966 to the present day, paediatric haemodynamics has undergone significant innovation. Over the years interventional cardiology procedures, both haemodynamic and electrophysiological, have become more and more effective and are now the therapy of choice and the most appropriate treatment criterion in many clinical conditions, as surgeons find themselves up against more and more complex lesions. To rise to these challenges, cath labs must necessarily meet very high safety standards and be organised in a way that allows them to deal with the amount of activity and ensures essential care criteria. Many of the important factors for safety are dependent on and must be guaranteed by the members of the nursing team. Nowadays, nurses can count on internationally accredited procedures that are the result of years of research and fine-tuning. In 2008, the World Health Organization published and disseminated guidelines for safety in the operating theatre, called “Guidelines for Safe Surgery”. The same WHO guidelines are the basis of the “Manual for safety in the operating theatre: Recommendations and Checklist” published by the Ministry of Labour, Health and Social Policies in October 2009. The checklist is a tool developed with a view to improving safety and quality. It is made up of 20 items that serve as a guide when carrying out checks in the operating theatre. Within the context described above, the activities of the nurse performing duties at a haemodynamic facility are characterised by the need to be able to field a high degree of specialisation. The nurse must know how to relate to others and have the skills needed for performing the process of care, capacity of observation, planning, judgement and decision-taking. Neither should he/she lack the ability to properly interpret information and communicate in a comprehensive way. From the outset, the nurse who is assigned to a cath lab will be supported by a tutor who will follow him/her, step by step, for about 6 months. There is also a practice example of a specific procedure: “Percutaneous transcatheter implantation of Edwards SAPIEN XT pulmonary heart valve”. Recovery room (RR) is a place where any patient who needs to have continuous postoperative care is accommodated. The nursing staff attached to the RR must be adequately prepared. Their task is to take continuous and direct care of the patient, and amongst their therapeutic goals, we find establishing pain management, treatment of nausea and vomiting, recovery of normothermia and acid-base and electrolyte equilibrium.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Pediatric Cardiac SurgeryBambino Gesù Children’s Hospital and Research InstituteRomeItaly

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