From the Editor

Julie LancasterOur topic this month is eyes—specifically corneal transplants.
Corneal transplantation is a surgical procedure in which a damaged or diseased cornea is partially or entirely replaced by donated corneal tissue from a recently deceased person.
There were 47,530 corneal transplants performed in the U.S. in 2014, according to the Eye Bank Association of America’s website. Since 1961, more than 1,500,000 men, women, and children ranging in age from nine days to 100+ years, have had their sight restored. And 95 to 99 percent of all corneal transplant operations successfully restore the corneal recipient’s vision.
Scroll down for a video about corneal suturing, an eye crossword puzzle, app, and more.
Our Student in the Spotlight is Amber Lovell, RN, from Dallas, TX, who attended our SutureStar workshop in Dallas this month.
And you’ll find the latest batch of RNFA jobs we’ve collected for you, along with NIFA’s favorite links. Enjoy!
Video: Corneal Suturing, Part 1-A


Leo J. Maguire, M.D., consultant in cornea and external disease, developed the curriculum in resident corneal surgery at Mayo Clinic. In this video from Broadcast Med, the first of a series, he discusses how to engineer the placement of a suture in a corneal transplant so that the length, depth, and radiality of the sutures are consistent around the circumference of a corneal graft. Mayo has used this methodology successfully with its Ophthalmology residents for the past 15 years.
Perioperative Puzzle: Eye Crossword


Test your knowledge of eye anatomy, conditions and surgery with this month’s crossword puzzle.
When you’re ready to check your answers follow this link to see how well you did. Good luck!


iPad / iPhone Apps
Eye Decide. This app from Orca Health, Inc., is a patient engagement tool for healthcare providers that can assist the comprehension of patient education. Providing information on eye anatomy, eye conditions and medical procedures, it allows you to share customized care plans with your patient. For iPhone and iPad.
In the Spotlight


Name: Amber Lovell
Credentials:  RN
Student Status: Student
City and State: Dallas, TX
Current Job: OR supervisorWhere did you get your RN degree?
Baylor University.

How did you come to choose perioperative nursing?
I chose perioperative nursing because I was able to observe in the OR during my second semester of nursing school. The surgeon in the room was a great teacher and I was able to see how, what and why he was doing things in the procedure. A year and a half later I actually worked in the OR with that same surgeon. I told him that he was one of the biggest reasons I chose nursing. Plus, I enjoy working on a team, and the OR is a big team.

What is the scariest moment you’ve ever seen at the table?
I was learning to scrub a thoracoscopy when the patient went into asystole. We flipped the patient and the surgeon began performing chest compressions. About four other nurses descended on our room to help run for things. I was still the only one scrubbed in with the surgeon. He very calmly told me we were going to insert a balloon pump. I had never done anything like that before, however, with the help of the circulators and a calm surgeon we inserted the balloon pump and the patient was okay.

What is one technique or RNFA trick you’ve learned from NIFA that you will use for life?
I’ve learned several tricks! I’ve learned how to palm the needle holder, and to always set myself for where I want to go next. It will shave minutes off my suturing time.

How do you feel having your RNFA will impact your life/career?
I believe my RNFA will give me more freedom/autonomy than my role as a perioperative RN. I will also be able to work closely with the surgeons in the OR. It’s been a goal of mine to get my RNFA as soon as I reached the two-year mark in the OR and I’m glad I’m finally able to reach my goal.

Job Front

Click here for the RNFA job postings we’ve collected for you this month.

NIFA Office Hours
Monday-Thursday 7:30am – 5:00pm (Fridays 7:30am – 4:00pm).