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Orthopedic Nursing: Basics for Effective Patient Care

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Course Description

The purpose of this program is to enable the learner/nurse/orthopedic patient care provider to gain an introduction to the specialty of orthopedic nursing, which includes the study of the care of patients experiencing orthopedic trauma, frac-tures, total joint arthroplasty, spinal surgery or orthopedic complications. Participants will be able to identify the essential components of a thorough orthopedic-focused assessment for early recognition of complications, describe the breadth of orthopedic injuries and conditions, determine safe patient positioning and mobilization and define essential components for effective orthopedic patient education to achieve positive patient outcomes. The full-day course content is based on national orthopedic nursing practice standards and patient teaching implications.

Program Learning Outcomes

This program prepares the learner to:

  • Through a comprehensive review of basic orthopedic patient-centered care, have the foundation for provision of safe and effective patient care and state confidence in the promotion of positive orthopedic patient outcomes.


Sign-in begins at 7:30 am. The day includes a one-hour lunch (on your own), as well as a morning and afternoon break of 15 minutes each. The order of lectures presented and break times may vary according to speaker preference.

8:00 am to 5:00 pm

  • Welcome, Review and Overview of Subspecialties
  • Basic Principles of Musculoskeletal System and Nursing Focus in Orthopedic History
    Structures | Growth, Metabolism | Aging | Culture, Dietary Considerations | Basic Nursing Principles
  • Orthopedic Priorities of Care
    Tendonitis, Carpel Tunnel Syndrome | Hallux Valgus, Digit Contractures | Cerebral Palsy, Multiple Sclerosis | Osteosarcoma, Multiple Myeloma | Joints and Mobility | Degenerative Joint Diseases | Metabolic Bone Diseases | Pediatric Conditions
  • Orthopedic Trauma and Fractures
    Strains, Strains, Subluxation, Dislocation | Causes and Classification of Fractures | Bone Healing | Priori-ties and Key Assessments | Fracture Management | Cast Care | Traction | Transfers/Mobility | Equipment
  • Benefits of Total Joint Arthroplasty
    Priorities | Hip | Knee | Other Procedures | Venous Thromboembolism Threat | New Technologies
  • Amputation
    Causes | Level | Patient Care
  • Spinal Surgery
    Case Study | Diagnostic Tests | Care | Decision Making | Priorities | Instrumentation | Monitoring
  • Complications
    Signs/Symptoms | Tests | Strategies | Nursing Implications
  • Resources for Professional Advancement
    National Association of Orthopaedic Nurses | Orthopaedic Nurses Certification Board | Practice Questions