ADVERTISEMENT
See Inside June/July 2006

Neuro Nurses Unite

A patient recovering from a head injury in a neurological intensive care unit (ICU) might be surprised to learn that the nurses caring for him had little training in neuroscience beyond the typical four hours of lecture in nursing school. Some leading caregivers are trying to change that. Joanne V. Hickey, a neuroscience nurse scholar and clinical expert at the Methodist Neurological Institute in Houston, and Ann Quinn Todd, nursing director of the institute’s Eddy Scurlock Stroke Center, joined forces to organize the institute’s inaugural symposium on neurological nursing. More than 150 practitioners attended.

Neurological nursing focuses on treating injuries and diseases of the brain and nervous system, such as stroke, aneurysms and neurodegenerative conditions such as Parkinson’s. The field has existed for 60 years but “has long played second fiddle to cardiovascular nursing,” Todd says. “Heart has always been the biggest competition, but it’s just a pump!” Recent times have brought innovations such as improved magnetic resonance imaging technology and instruments like the MERCI corkscrew, which nurses can insert to extract blood clots from the brains of patients who suffer embolic strokes. These tools and more were featured in hands-on exhibits at the symposium, which also offered seminars on the electronic ICU, pituitary tumors and brain stem cells.

This is only a preview. Get the rest of this article now!

Select an option below:

Customer Sign In

*You must have purchased this issue or have a qualifying subscription to access this content


It has been identified that the institution you are trying to access this article from has institutional site license access to Scientific American on nature.com.
Click here to access this article in its entirety through site license access.

Share this Article:

Comments

You must sign in or register as a ScientificAmerican.com member to submit a comment.
Scientific American Dinosaurs

Get Total Access to our Digital Anthology

1,200 Articles

Order Now - Just $39! >

X

Email this Article

X