May 2022 • Volume 16, No. 5

From the Editor

“Gray May” is Brain Tumor Awareness Month, according to the National Brain Tumor Society (NBTS). Did you know that an estimated 700,000 Americans are living with a primary brain tumor?

Approximately 71% of all brain tumors are benign, according to a Facts page at the NBTS website, leaving the remaining 29% of all brain tumors malignant. Brain tumors can be deadly, significantly impact quality of life, and change everything for a patient and their loved ones. They do not discriminate, inflicting men, women, and children of all races and ethnicities.

In this issue we bring you resources about brain tumors and related surgeries. 

Our Student in the Spotlight is Nikki Johnson, APRN, BC, of Nashville, TN. 

And scroll down for jobs we’ve collected for you, as well as NIFA’s favorite links.

Also timely: Even if May is Gray, many parts of North America are enjoying glorious spring flowers, new greenery and fresh air right now. Despite the horrors we have been pummeled with recently in the news, nature continues to offer its healing benefits to us, if we will just take the time to partake (with phones turned off). Whether it’s making time for a walk in the woods, stopping at a park on our way home, or just sitting in a yard, letting ourselves really see a tree or some blades of grass, may we all find some ways let nature refresh us.


Julie Lancaster, Editor

Brain Tumor Resources


New technology offers sharper images during brain tumor surgery

A neurosurgeon in Kentucky has been using a new technology to remove glioblastoma brain tumors that are traditionally hard to see and fully remove. It involves a new headlamp device and an ingestible drug that fluoresces as a hot pink indicator when viewed under the headlamp during surgery.
Read more . . .

Neurologic and Survival Outcomes After Awake Craniotomy for Glioblastoma

Earlier this month, Luis Pagan, was standing on the top rung of his ladder when the seizure began. After being found on the floor hours later Luis was rushed to the hospital where he learned he had a brain tumor and that he was a candidate for an awake craniotomy, that is, a procedure performed on the brain while the patient is awake and alert. Read Luis’s story here, then read about the neurologic and survival outcomes for patients in awake vs. asleep craniotomy procedures.
Read more . . .



From the Seattle Science Foundation, this is a demonstration of a frontal-temporal craniotomy and other procedures taken to treat midline suprasellar tumors. (1 hr. 50 min.)
Watch Video…



From the University of Utah Clinical Neurosciences Center, this is a demonstration of a left occipital craniotomy for resection of falcotentorial meningioma (4 min.)
Watch Video…



Extended endoscopic endonasal approach for resection of tuberculum sellae meningioma, from the Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California (14 min.)
Watch Video…



From the Seattle Science Foundation, this is a demonstration of MRI Guided Laser Amygdalohippocampectomy (26 min.)
Watch Video…




Quick Help?

Next month is our annual Summer Reading (and other media) issue, with books, podcasts, movies, and TV shows that offer some fun and relaxation for perioperative nurses. If you’ve read a great book or article this year, or discovered a new podcast or TV show that other nurses you know might like, please email me with your suggestions. This can include anything from healthcare, surgery, and/or the perioperative nurse experience. Thanks!

Student Spotlight: Nikki Johnson


Student Status
Current student in NIFA’s RNFA program

City & State
Nashville, TN

Current Position
Nurse Manager

Where did you get your RN degree?
University of North Alabama

How did you come to choose perioperative nursing?
I chose OR in my last semester of nursing school. I enjoyed the rotation and have been in OR since ’06 as a circulator.

What is the scariest moment you’ve ever seen at the table?
During an aneurysm, the microscope turned off right after aneurysm ruptured.

What is one technique or RNFA trick you’ve learned from NIFA that you will use for life?
I learned the 1- and 2-hand tie. I especially learned the 2-hand tie (correctly).

How do you feel having your RNFA will impact your life/career?
RNFA will have a positive impact on my career as an OR manager and staff RN. In addition, I will be able to practice as an APRN in my facility. So the RNFA gives me many more options in the OR.

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.

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