Ask the care expert: untangling a patient's tubes and wires

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Sherrie Dornberger, RNC, CDONA, FACDONA, executive director, NADONA
Sherrie Dornberger, RNC, CDONA, FACDONA, executive director, NADONA
As nurses in skilled care units, we have been coming upon a problem I never thought we would have. Our residents now who are very ill have several tubes and wires coming from the resident over the side of the bed. The tubes tend to get tangled, causing the nurses to spend extra time to separate them instead of tending to the resident directly. Do you have any suggestions?

Starting in long-term care in 1975, I never thought I would see the day when our residents would have as many cords, wires and tubes coming from them as patients in the acute care facilities. I have had to face that problem myself when recovering from a severe illness. I had the oxygen, picc lines, and IVs getting tangled up—the “spaghetti syndrome.” Because I was doing my own picc line care at home, having these all tied up together would make me crazy.

I found a product called the “Beata Clasp.” The Beata Clasp is a foam-like soft pliable clasp that has a split in its undercarriage, which allows it to open and mold itself to the bed rail or half rail. The top has three or four hole openings.

There are different sizes available that will hold three or four different tubes or wires.

It usually takes a nurse to develop such a great product, and this is no exception. Nurses often talk about ideas we have for products but rarely follow through. But thanks to Lenore Henning, who developed this product, I can honestly say it will save nursing time and accidents by keeping lines from laying on the floor, preventing nurses from taping lines or wires to the bed, and allowing the tracing of lines back to their origin.

More information on this product is available on at www.beataclasp.com.