A Day in a Nurse’s Shoes


Here at Nebraska Orthopaedic Hospital, we perform around 10,000 surgeries each year. With so many cases and procedures, it’s imperative that we provide the best experience for our patients. That’s why we employ the best surgical staff, from physicians to surgical technicians. Our surgical nurses are especially important to our team.

A typical day for a surgical nurse starts early, around 6:30 am. Shifts are either 8 or 10 hours long. Their first task of the day is to review the surgeries that will be performed that day, and prepare the operating room with proper instrumentation that will be used during surgery.

Patients are greeted in the pre-operative area, and their procedure is reviewed. Anesthesia is then administered, and the procedure can begin. Surgeries can last anywhere from 20 minutes to 3 hours. Some of the most common procedures performed at NOH besides total joint replacements are sports medicine surgeries like knee and shoulder arthroscopies and hand surgeries like carpal tunnel releases and trigger finger releases. Our staff provides a safe, secure, and efficient environment for the patient during their surgery.

After the surgery is complete, the post-anesthesia care unit (PACU) is called and the patient is taken to the post-operative and recovery area. The families are also notified of the patient’s status. At this point, the operating room is cleaned and reset for the next patient.

“One of the best things about being a nurse here is helping people and making a difference in their lives at such a vulnerable time,” says Joanie Hoffart, Operating Room Lead Nurse. “Our primary concern is always the safety of the patient and we have great communication and teamwork that allows us to provide the best patient experience.”

To learn more about our patient experience or to schedule an appointment, visit www.neorthohospital.com.

A Day in a Nurse’s Shoes

Getting Back in the Game

bball hoop gym


Jamie Winkler is your typical high school junior, who loves playing multiple sports including volleyball, basketball and track. She’s been honored as Nebraska Crossing Outlets’ Player of the Week and serves as Class President. But a few months ago, Jamie was in a whole different world.

“I was at a basketball game, and went up for a lay-up,” said Jamie. “When I landed, my knee just gave out.”

Jamie had to have an ACL reconstruction for the non-contact injury. When the ACL is ruptured, return to play can be difficult and sometimes impossible.

“I don’t think I cried because of the pain, but because I realized I wouldn’t be doing anything for six months,” said Jamie. “That was a long time to be sitting around watching all my friends play.”

After the surgery, Jamie was ready to get back to her regular activities. She was anxious to get back on the court and watching her friends play wasn’t satisfying. Recovery seemed like a slow process, and Jamie worked hard in the physical therapy clinic, even breaking the leg press record! But it wasn’t just her efforts in the physical therapy clinic that paid off.

“We knew how much she wanted to get back in the game, simply by seeing the determination in her face,” said Ashley Conlin, Jamie’s physical therapist. “She worked so hard on her own and was in the weight room constantly to improve and pass the benchmarks we set for her.”

“Coordination and communication between Jamie, her physical therapists and Dr. Arnold was key to her recovery,” says Jamie’s dad, John Winkler. “The mental part was huge. It’s one thing for her dad to be telling her it will be ok, but another for her to hear it from the medical professionals.”

Today, Jamie is helping lead the Louisville Girls Basketball team on their first run to the state championships. She still uses the skills she learned during her time in physical therapy on the court and encourages her teammates to be safe when they’re playing or practicing. Ashley goes to games when she can, and cheers on the team.

“There were a lot of things we didn’t even realize she was doing wrong until we came here,” said John. “To have Ashley care so much and want to see Jamie excel again really means a lot. We’d recommend that anyone with sports injury go to see Dr. Arnold and the team at Nebraska Orthopaedic Hospital.”

To learn more about our services or to schedule an appointment, visit www.neorthohospital.com.

Getting Back in the Game

Exercise Your Way to A Healthy Heart

Exercising with dumbells at gym

Physical inactivity, high blood pressure, and smoking are risk factors for heart disease. Over time, fat and cholesterol can build up in your blood vessels. When arteries that supply the heart and brain with blood become clogged, a heart attack can occur. Exercise can help keep the blood vessels open. This can help prevent heart disease or stroke. So, be the exception rather than the rule. Exercise for a healthier heart.

Eight ways to help your heart

Look at all the ways exercise can help your heart:

  • Reduces your risk of developing heart disease
  • Lowers your risk of developing high blood pressure
  • Lowers blood pressure in some people who have high blood pressure
  • Raises your high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or “good” cholesterol
  • Lowers your low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or “bad” cholesterol
  • Lowers the amount of triglycerides, a form of fat, in your bloodstream
  • Helps you lose extra weight, which can strain your heart
  • Makes your heart and lungs work more efficiently

Added benefits

Ae we mentioned before, exercise may also protect against stroke. Some great starter exercises include walking, stair-climbing, dancing, jogging, and other activities of at least moderate intensity .

Exercise can also help you prevent or manage several chronic diseases that become more common with age, like type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, and arthritis.

Both your body and mind can benefit from exercise. Exercise can help you manage stress. While it’s not clear how stress affects the heart directly, research has shown that stress can contribute to high blood pressure, high cholesterol and other risk factors that can cause heart disease or other issues. Cutting down on stress can make your life much more enjoyable. Exercise can also boost your self-image and help counter anxiety and depression.

Which activities are right for you?

You don’t have to strain your body to benefit from exercise. Even moderate exercise is good for you. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) health guidelines for Americans recommends 30 to 60 minutes of moderate exercise most days of the week. Examples of moderate activities include:

  • Walking
  • Gardening
  • Doing housework
  • Ballroom dancing

For increased benefit to your heart and lungs, try more vigorous aerobic activity. The CDC says you can exercise moderately for about 150 minutes each week, or you can get 75 weekly minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic exercise. These are examples of more vigorous activities:

  • Jogging or running
  • Swimming laps
  • Bicycling briskly
  • Aerobic dancing
  • Cross-country skiing
  • Rowing

How to get physical

Use these tips to move toward a more active life:

  • Choose activities you like. The key to starting and sticking with an exercise program is to pick activities that you enjoy. Choose a convenient time and place to workout. Try to make exercise a habit. Do different activities rather than relying on just one so that you don’t become bored with your routine. Finding an exercise partner may make it easier to stick to a regular schedule. If you miss an exercise session, don’t worry. Just find another way to be active that day.
  • Build up your endurance. Start out by exercising slowly, especially if you haven’t been active for a while. This will allow your muscles to warm up. Gradually build up how hard, how long, and how often you exercise. Be careful though. Overdoing exercise increases the risk of injury. Listen to your body, and don’t ignore any pain in your joints, ankles, feet, or legs. If you stretch before exercising, do so gently. Also take plenty of time to stretch at the end of each session. This can help you become more flexible and allows your muscles to heal faster.
  • Drink plenty of water. While you exercise, drink some water every 15 minutes, especially in hot, humid conditions. Be sure to drink before you feel thirsty. You can’t always rely on thirst alone to tell you when you need more fluids.
  • Talk with your doctor. Check with your doctor before starting any new exercise program. This is especially important if you have been inactive for a while. It is also important if you have a chronic health problem, such as heart disease, diabetes, or obesity, or if you are at high risk for developing these problems. If you have any chest pain or discomfort during exercise that goes away after you rest, call your doctor right away. This can be a sign of heart disease.

For more information on heart-healthy exercise, visit the American Heart Association website at http://www.americanheart.org.

Exercise tips

Make exercise a part of your life with these tips:

  • Walk, jog, or bike around town instead of driving.
  • Take an activity break during the day instead of eating a snack.
  • Find out if your local shopping mall opens early for indoor walkers.
  • Listen to music or watch TV to keep yourself entertained while you exercise.
  • Surround yourself with people who support and encourage you.
  • Set realistic exercise goals. Reward yourself when you achieve your goals.
  • Plan vacations around activities, such as hiking or swimming.

For more tips on ways to exercise while keeping your joints healthy, check out our physical therapy page at http://www.neorthohospital/our-services/physical-therapy.


Exercise Your Way to A Healthy Heart