Have a look at this comic strip explaining it all:
There have recently been several reports in the news [1-3] that placing ventilated COVID-19 patients in the prone position about 16 hours per day helps significantly to increase the oxygen saturation of the lungs. The explanation seems to be that sections of the lungs are being squeezed by the weight of the body when patients are on their back. Turning them on their bellies opens up these parts of the lungs for better oxygenation.
The idea of using the prone position in COVID-19 patients can be related to numerous studies [4-8] proving the benefits for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), - conditions with similarities to the decreased lung function in COVID-19 patients.
However, there are disadvantages to having patients in the prone position: There could be increased risk of air-born contamination when turning ventilated COVID-19 patients in the prone position, and they require more sedation which may prolong the ICU stay. Non-ventilated and non-sedated COVID-19 patients may find it uncomfortable to be on their stomachs for 16 hours so they don’t achieve a significant increase in oxygenation.
Heart pillows and sternum protection devices - Very different functions yet important roles in advancing a patients recovery.
The intention is to educate about the patient's recovery and experience after sternotomy procedures, and how to best avoid complications.
After major surgery, the last thing anyone wants to deal with during their recovery is excessive pain. Of course, some post-op pain is usually inevitable, which is why pain management can have a big effect on the recovery experience of a patient. Not only does this make the recovery period more comfortable, studies have shown that successful post-op pain management can prevent long-term complications and shorten the recovery time.
There are many ways to control pain after surgery. Doctors may prescribe a number of different courses of action, including pain medication. Some of the most commonly prescribed pain medications are opioids.
External wound supports have not yet been considered as standard adjunctive therapy in ERAS protocols. Yet, they could very well be an important complementary treatment that easily fits into the fast track regimes. In addition, they could help patients to be more compliant with the activity protocols in the hospital and at home.