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Orthopaedic Snafus

When Adverse Events Happen in Orthopaedics

Smith, Mary Atkinson; Walsh, Colleen; Levin, Barbara; Eten, Kathryn L.; Yager, Melissa

doi: 10.1097/NOR.0000000000000324
Original Articles

The potential for adverse events exists when treating and managing orthopaedic patients in the intraoperative or postoperative environments, especially when it comes to falls, surgical site infections, venous thromboembolism, and injuries to nerves and blood vessels. Orthopaedic nurses play a vital role in the promotion and use of evidence-based interventions to decrease the incidence of these adverse events, improve quality of care, and minimize the financial burden related to these adverse events.

Mary Atkinson Smith, DNP, FNP-BC, ONP-C, CNOR, RNFA, Nurse Practitioner, Starkville Orthopedic Clinic, Starkville, Mississippi; Assistant Program Director/Assistant Professor at South University, Savannah, Georgia; and Founder, Nurses Lead (

Colleen Walsh, DNP, RN, ONC, ONP-C, CNS, ACNP-BC, Contract Clinical Assistant Professor, Graduate Nursing, University of Southern Indiana, College of Nursing and Health Professions, Evansville, Indiana.

Barbara Levin, BSN, RN, ONC, CMSRN, LNCC, Clinical Scholar, Orthopaedic Trauma Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital and Vice Chair–Massachusetts Board of Registration in Nursing.

Kathryn L. Eten, BSN, RN, ONC, CCM Program Administrator, Orthopedic Center of Excellence, Good Samaritan TriHealth Hospital, Cincinnati, Ohio.

Melissa Yager, MS, RN, CNS, ONC, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Sharp Memorial Hospital, and Associate Faculty at Mira Costa College.

The authors and planners have disclosed no potential conflicts of interest, financial or otherwise.

© 2017 National Association of Orthopaedic Nurses