Tools of the trade: Bair Hugger

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heating blanket

by Amanda Nelson VN, East Bundaberg Veterinary Hospital, QLD

Bair Hugger is a heating blanket we use to warm patients, particularly during surgical procedures. It looks like an inflatable pillowcase we pop underneath the patient during surgery. It’s attached to a blower that inflates it with warm air to help keep the animal’s temperature maintained during the procedure.

What’s good about it

It’s important not to let a patient’s temperature drop too low, particularly during longer procedures when they’re under for a couple of hours. Even during shorter procedures, their temperature can drop dramatically. The Bair Hugger maintains a nice even temperature and aids in their recovery afterwards.

If the Bair Hugger gets splashed with blood or other fluids, it can be cleaned by putting it through a washing machine. There’s a blower that sits on the floor and hot air is delivered through a tube. There’s a number of different blowers on the market and the Bair Hugger will work with all of them.

Bair Hugger comes in three different sizes to suit different animals. We use a Bair Hugger during every surgical procedure and sometimes postoperatively as well. We have one for each of our surgical tables and just replace the bags and the bedding every time we use it.

What’s not so good

The blower is quite large and must be attached to mains power. You just have to make sure it’s positioned so it’s not in the way.

Where did you get it

Provet

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