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Who are the members of your surgical team?

On Behalf of | Sep 22, 2016 | Firm News, Surgical Errors

When you are scheduled for surgery in Providence County, you may feel as though the only provider that you are placing your trust and confidence in is your surgeon. In reality, however, complex surgical procedures are almost never performed by a single provider. Your procedure will typically require an entire surgical team if it is to be completed successfully. Understanding who the various team members are and what their responsibilities may be during your surgery may be helpful information for you to have prior to entering into the operating room.

According to the Encyclopedia of Surgery shared by Advameg, Inc., your surgical team will likely consist of your surgeon, an anesthesiologist, a certified registered nurse anesthetist and an operating nurse. Their specific duties are described as follows:

  • The surgeon: Your surgeon’s role may the easiest to define. He or she is the one who leads the surgical team, and in most cases, performs the actual procedure.
  • The anesthesiologist: Your anesthesiologist manages your pain through the administration of a local or general anesthetic, or by conscious or deep sedation.
  •  The CRNA: A CRNA will typically assist the anesthesiologist by monitoring your anesthetic levels and the function of the mechanisms delivering your medication. In some cases, he or she may step in and fulfill the role of the anesthesiologist entirely.
  • The OR nurse: Your nurse provides you with your comprehensive care, including your pre- and postoperative treatments. He or she assists the surgeon during your procedure through tasks such as retrieving tools and implants and monitoring your vital signs.

In certain cases, surgical technicians and even secondary surgeons may be called in to assist with a procedure. Once you know the role that each team member fulfills, it may be easier to assign liability if an error occurs during your surgery.