January 2022 • Volume 16, No. 2

From the Editor

This February has seen big snowstorms stretching across much of the U.S., causing many injuries from slips and falls on the ice.

And on the other side of the globe, snow, ice and cold interacted with the extreme speeds and challenging athletic feats of championship sports to produce numerous bone and ligament injuries at this year’s Winter Olympics in Beijing. In this issue, we look at some of those injuries and related types of surgeries.

Our Student in the Spotlight is Lorrie Schuler Salinas, FNP-BC, of San Antonio, TX.

Scroll down for jobs we’ve collected for you and NIFA’s favorite links.


Julie Lancaster, Editor

Some Injuries Connected with the 2022 Winter Olympics


Mateusz Sochowicz, Luge

Last November Polish luger Mateusz Sochowicz was in Beijing, taking a test run on the luge track that would be used in the Olympics, when he saw that a metal barrier that should have been open was in the closed position. “Thinking quickly and tapping into his childhood background as a downhill skier, the 25-year-old let go of his sled, stood into a crouch and attempted to springboard over the gate,” writes Alex Prewitt of Sports Illustrated. “Instead he struck it, fracturing his left kneecap and suffering such deep cuts on his right leg that a 20-centimeter section of bone was exposed.” Sochowicz recovered enough to come back to Beijing and compete in the Olympics this month, where he ranked as number 25 in men’s singles. Read about the accident and Sochowicz’s comeback . . .

Rina Yoshika, Snowboarding

Snowboarder Rina Yoshika of Japan took a bad fall on February 4 while training before the slopestyle competition. She lay without moving until a medical team strapped her to a sled and moved her off the course, having suffered a spinal cord injury. However, she was not paralyzed. Two days later she reported that she had undergone surgery and was expected to recover. 
Read about the accident . . .
Report after Yoshika’s surgery . . .

Nina O’Brien, Alpine Skiing

American skier Nina O’Brien experienced a fall during the women’s giant slalom on February 7. She crashed into one of the gates and was taken from the area on a stretcher. The next day she announced she had had a successful surgery on her left leg, where she had suffered an open fracture to her tibia. 
Read about the accident . . .
Report after O’Brien’s surgery . . .

Brianna Decker, Hockey

Brianna Decker of the U.S. women’s ice hockey team got tangled with a player from the opposing team and fell during the team’s opening game, breaking her fibula and tearing ligaments in her leg. She would be facing surgery upon her return, but for the moment she stayed in Beijing to support her teammates and was able to join them, using a knee scooter, as they accepted the silver medal. 
Read about the accident . . .
Decker at the medal ceremony . . .

Surgery Videos

Every injury is unique, and we don’t have details on the specific surgeries involved in the above four cases. But the following surgical videos address some of the issues that these four athletes’ surgical teams may have faced.

Patella Fracture Reduction and Fixation Using Cannulated Screws and Tension Band Wiring, from NYU Langone Orthopedics 
Watch video . . .

Posterior Decompression of a Burst Fracture with Jens R. Chapman, MD, from Seattle Science Foundation 
Watch video . . .

Managing open distal tibia fractures: tips and tricks, with Christopher Haydel, MD, Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, Temple University
Watch video . . .

Ankle Fracture Surgery Video | Dr. Moore Using Stryker ‘VariAx Fibula’ Plating System, Moore Foot and Ankle Specialists, Spring, TX 
Watch video . . .

Student Spotlight: Lorrie Schuler Salinas


Student Status
Current student in NIFA’s RNFA program

City & State
San Antonio, TX

Current Position
Nurse Practitioner for a spine surgeon

Where did you get your RN degree?
Associate’s – Victoria College; Bachelor’s – University of Houston-Victoria; Master’s – UT Arlington

How did you come to choose perioperative nursing?
I have always loved the OR. During rotation for my associate’s degree, I knew I wanted to work in surgery. First two years of nursing I was unable to find a surgery job so I worked the floor and moved to SA 2 years later for the OR.

What is the most memorable moment you’ve ever seen at the table?
My first day in the OR as a new employee, I was observing the completion of a CABG, one of the techs dropped a suture, I picked it up and threw it back on the table . . . I was mortified and embarrassed, but I learned a lot that day.

What is one technique or RNFA trick you’ve learned from NIFA that you will use for life?
I will use all the suturing techniques and tricks taught during the SutureStar workshop daily. I did like the finger and flip technique while one-hand-knot tying.

How do you feel having your RNFA will impact your life/career?
I want to work with a surgeon in and out of surgery. These tools will hopefully be put to use daily.

Jobs Front

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

NIFA – Office Hours

Monday-Thursday, 8:00am – 5:00pm
Friday, 8:00am – 4:00pm

Practice Resources

Here are several of the most-in-demand sites for our students, prospective students and grads:

MD Edge Surgery News: Specialty News and Commentaries, Videos and More
RNFA Scope of Practice by State (PDF)
ACS List of Cases that Require an Assistant at Surgery, 2020 (PDF)
Perioperative Nurse Links (state nursing boards & professional associations)
APRN Nurse Links

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this newsletter are strictly those of their respective authors and do not necessarily represent the views of NIFA. NIFA does not give any express or implied warranty as to the accuracy of statements made by our contributors and does not accept any liability for error or omission. It is the responsibility of all perioperative personnel to work within and adhere to their facility bylaws and individual scope of practice.

Copyright © 2022, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:

12354 E Caley Avenue
Centennial, CO 80111