Going to intensive care after surgery

Nurse on PICU

After an operation, there is a chance that children and young people will need to be moved to the intensive care unit (PICU) for a short time. This often happens after a big operation, such as heart surgery as your child will need to be closely monitored for a while. The unit has the specialist equipment to do this, whereas a normal ward hasn't.

PICU also has the equipment to support breathing if they need a bit of help while they wake up from the anaesthetic.

Care in PICU

PICU nurses stay with our children and young people throughout their stay and constantly check the monitors and other equipment to make sure all is well. Once awake, the nurses will make sure your child is okay and administer any medicine needed if they are in pain.

Before coming in for an operation, you will be told whether your child is likely to go to PICU straight afterwards, rather than going to the ward. If so, you can arrange to have a look beforehand so you have an idea of where they will wake up.