Strategies for Avoiding Problems with the Use of Pneumatic Tourniquets
MedSun: Newsletter #53, October 2010

Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority

Pneumatic tourniquets are used primarily to occlude blood flow and obtain a bloodless field during limb surgery. They also facilitate intravenous regional anesthesia, an alternative to general anesthesia for surgery involving the upper or lower limbs. In this application (also known as a Bier block), the tourniquet prevents infused local anesthetic from flowing out of the limb and also provides a bloodless operating field. This article considers tourniquet problems reported to the Authority and reviews use and maintenance issues that can prevent these types of problems.

Additional Information:

Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority. Strategies for Avoiding Problems with the Use of Pneumatic Tourniquets. September 2010.
http://patientsafetyauthority.org/ADVISORIES/AdvisoryLibrary/2010/Sep7(3)/Pages/97.aspx

FDA Safety Tip: Pneumatic Tourniquet Cuffs, With a Tourniquet System. January 2007.
http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/medsun/news/newsletter.cfm?news=11#1

FDA Patient Safety News (video). Safe Use of Pneumatic Tourniquet Cuffs. April 2007.
http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/psn/transcript.cfm?show=62#7


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