Information About Intensive Care Equipment

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There are many pieces of medical equipment available for the doctors to use to help in your relatives treatment which will probably be unfamiliar to you.

Some of this equipment can be affected by mobile phones, so please turn them off.

Machines may be added or taken away depending on the treatment the doctor prescribes to your relative. The nursing staff will explain about any new treatment when you visit.

All medical equipment used in the ICU have alarms, they are intended to alert the nursing staff if changes need to be made. The alarms do not mean that there is a problem with your relatives’ condition.

To help you the following is a list of the most common items of equipment you may come across.



    • Intensive Care Equipment - MonitorThis is a box situated on the wall above the bed, and it has a screen similar to a television.
    • The purpose of this monitor is to help the doctors and nursing staff to observe the patient’s heart rate, blood pressure and other vital body signs.
    • The information on the monitor screen is also displayed on another screen at the nurse’s station, allowing staff to observe the patients even when away from the bed side.


    • Intensive Care - VentilatorVentilators are sometimes known as ‘Life Support Machines’ and there are several different types used in ICU
    • If used, the ventilator will be situated on a trolley next to the bed side and has one or more tubes connected to the patient. The ventilator’s purpose is to help the patient breath.
    • Normally the doctor will prescribe an anaesthetic to keep the patient asleep and comfortable whilst they are connected to the ventilator.


    • Intensive Care - Infusion PumpsInfusion pumps are used to give ‘drips’ to the patient. They may be of different types and different numbers of pumps may be used depending on the treatment the doctor prescribes.
    • There may be other items of equipment used in the treatment of your relatives. The nursing staff will be happy to explain them when you visit.