Purpose and Procedure of Postoperative Bed Making

What is Postoperative Bed?

A postoperative bed or surgical bed is prepared for the patient who returns from the operating room or from another procedure that requires transfer into bed from the stretcher and sometimes from a wheelchair. The bed should be in a flat position. The bottom sheet may be covered with a cotton bath blanket that is tucked tightly beneath the mattress.

Definition of Postoperative Bed Making:

A postoperative bed or surgical bed is a special type of bed made for the patient who is coming from the operation theatre or from another procedure that requires anesthesia. The bed is made in such a way as to make it easy to transfer the unconscious or weak patient from a stretcher to the bed.

Postoperative bed making process
Fig: Postoperative bed making process

Purpose of Postoperative Bed Making:

The main purposes of postoperative bed-making or surgical bed-making are pointed below:

  1. To protect the patient from immediate comply anesthesia or choking.
  2. To lift or transfer the patient easily into bed from the stretcher.
  3. To provide warmth and comfort for the patient.
  4. To observe and prevent patient complications.
  5. To save time, effort, and materials.
  6. To arrange the bed and other furniture to facilitate the transfer of the patient from stretcher to bed.
  7. To combat postoperative complications and shock.
  8. To protect the mattress and other linen from blood, vomits, and other discharges.

Steps to Making a Surgical Bed:


Equipment needed for postoperative bed-making or surgical bed-making is below:

  1. Bed sheet-1,
  2. Draw sheet-1,
  3. Woolen blanket-2,
  4. Rubber sheet or Mackintosh sheet-1,
  5. Pillowcase- 1 or 2,
  6. Bath towel-1,
  7. Hot water bags with cover-3,
  8. Bed block or shock block-2.

On the Bedside Table:

  1. Stethoscope,
  2. Sphygmomanometer,
  3. Kidney basin,
  4. Galipot,
  5. Padded tongue depressor,
  6. Sponge holder,
  7. Airway tube.

In the Room:

  1. Oxygen cylinder,
  2. Tubing’s, humidifier and nasal catheter,
  3. Suction apparatus,
  4. IV pole or stand,
  5. Sterile drainage bottles with the tube.

Procedure of Postoperative Bed Making:

Postoperative bed-making is to permits easy patient transfer from surgery and promotes cleanliness and comfort. To make such a bed takes the following steps:

  1. A simple bed is made as per normal procedure making.
  2. Strip on the bed and turn the mattress.
  3. The upper bedding is fan-folded to one side accurate the stretcher.
  4. The top sheet does not tuck at the foot part. (In cold weather the hot water bottle is placed in the middle of the bed and covered with fan-folded top bedding).
  5. The temperature of water in a hot water bottle should not exceed 50°C.
  6. Fanfold together the top sheet and blanket towards the side away from the door.
  7. The small mackintosh sheet covered with a towel is open side at top of the bed.
  8. Place the bath towel over the small mackintosh sheet.
  9. Instead of a pillow, place a small protective sheet and a towel on the head end of the bed.
  10. The basin for the collection of vomits is placed on the bed stand.
  11. The transfusion stand is kept ready at the bedside.
  12. BP instrument, pulse meter can be kept ready at bed stand.
  13. Place the necessary articles on the bedside table and the irrigating stand, suction machine, and oxygen set-up adjacent to the bed.
  14. Keep the tray on the locker or table nearby and shock blocks on the floor near the foot end of the bed ready in case of necessity.
  15. Adjust the height of the bed to the level of the stretcher.
  16. After the patient is transferred to the bed, position the pillow for patient comfort.
  17. Ensure safety cover by pulling the top point of the sheet and blanket over the patient.
  18. Open the folds after covering the patient tuck in the linens at the foot of the bed and miter the corners.
  19. Bottom sheet useful to absorb moisture and stop dislocation of the bottom sheet.
  20. When the patient is transferred to bed, keep a kidney tray on the bed near the mouth, and pin-up the paper bag with the bottom sheet on the side.

More articles related to Bed Making:

  1. Types of Bed Making in Nursing | Purpose of Bed Making | Principles of Bed Making
  2. Occupied Bed Making Purposes | Occupied Bed Making Procedures
  3. Principles of Closed Bed Making in Nursing | Procedure of Closed Bed in Nursing

7 thoughts on “Purpose and Procedure of Postoperative Bed Making”

  1. Hey, very nice site. I came across this on Google, and I am stoked that I did. I will definitely be coming back here more often. Wish I could add to the conversation and bring a bit more to the table, but am just taking in as much info as I can at the moment. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Thank you sister,
    I wish I could be like you
    I too I am registered nurse from Nigeria if you need me you can interview me and I will join you at Bangladesh

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