What You Should Expect

When you first enter the Critical Care Unit, a variety of beeps, buzzes, machines and tubes may overwhelm you. All equipment in the Critical Care Unit represents state-of-the-art technology developed to help us care for seriously ill patients. The most basic piece of equipment is the heart monitor which allows us to continually view the heart’s activity. There are also monitors for blood pressure as well as other important measurements. Alarms may sound if a lead becomes detached or if the patient is moving about. The nurses are able to determine which alarms require immediate attention from those that don’t. Oxygen delivery is also important in the Critical Care. It may be delivered by a nasal cannula, mask or by mechanical ventilation. Tests are performed to determine how much oxygen a patient will require.

A variety of tubing and pumps are used to give fluid and medicine to the patient. The nurses will be able to explain the need for this equipment.