education: a collaborative approach among three greater Toronto area teaching hospitals Journal of Neuroscience Nursing, June, 2010 by Angela Sarro, Tracy Anthony, Rosalie Magtoto, Julie Mauceri ABSTRACT
Caring for an individual with a halo vest can be a frustrating and anxiety-provoking experience for healthcare professionals, the patient, and their families. Physicians or trained nurses apply halo vests in various situations in which cervical spine stabilization is required for an extended period. This device can be used as a first-line treatment in the management of nonoperative cervical trauma, that is, fractures, or placed following cervical surgery. Standardizing the application techniques and care associated with the halo vest, pin site care, and day-to-day activities of daily living will increase the comfort and self-confidence of healthcare professionals and the patient and family members in the provision of care. A collaborative approach among three greater Toronto area teaching hospitals aided in the development of standardizing care and patient educational materials for patients with halo vests. **********
The halo brace is a device that is used to immobilize the head and neck following a cervical fracture or postoperatively to allow bone healing. The system consists of a ring that is attached to the outer table of the skull with four pins and supporting rods attached to a vest (Botte, Byme, Abrams, & Garfin, 1996). In turn, this allows the patient to be mobile, whether it is independent or assisted ambulation or movement, and reduces complications associated with immobility. However, this generally creates significant anxiety and frustration for patients and their families because it requires significant adjustments to the individual's lifestyle and activities of daily living (Olson & Ustanko, 1990). Given that most patients are discharged back into the community, halo vest care standardization is essential for optimizing care to reduce patient...
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