<p><a href="/health/critical-care/what-is-critical-care-medicine">Critical care</a> is the treatment of people who are seriously ill. In the hospital, this care typically takes place in the <a href="/health/critical-care/what-is-the-icu">intensive care unit (ICU)</a> or in specialized units, such as those for people who have had heart attacks or major surgery. When you or someone you love is admitted for critical care, it can seem very different—and much scarier—than a typical hospital stay. Here's what you need to know to navigate the complex world of the ICU.</p>Read More
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Critical Care Q&As
How often can my family visit the ICU?
How often you can visit your family in the ICU will vary from hospital to hospital. Some hospitals have "open visitation" meaning that you can visit your family member at any time and there are no set visiting hours. Some hospitals may restrict visiting in the ICU to set hours, set amount of time and may also limit how many visitors may be in the room at the same time. It is always important to check with the ICU nurse so you can abide by the visitation rules.
- QShould I take my loved one's personal items home from ICU?
- QShould I call my family about my loved one in critical care?
- QAre there warning signs of respiratory failure in critical care?
- QIs there a chapel near the ICU?
- QIs medical literature available for family members of those in ICU?
- QIs there a chest pain ER for those with heart problems?
- QCan I nurse my baby in the NICU?
- QWhat role do nurses play in the intensive care unit (ICU)?
- QCan my family stay with me in critical care?
- QWhat happens in the emergency room (ER) examination room?
- QWhat is the role of a patient advocate in critical care?
- QWhat types of ailments are handled in an emergency room (ER)?
- QWhat does the cardiac event monitor record?
- QWhat information is gained from using patient monitors and telemetry?
- QCan I ask the staff to wash their hands before treating me in the ICU?
- QWhat is a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU)?
- QWhat situations require use of a ventilator in the NICU?
- QWhat types of pediatric specialists work in the NICU?
- QWhat is a Certified Emergency Nurse?
- QHow is neonatal ventilation performed in the NICU?
- QCan I hold my baby in the NICU?
- QWhy are physical and occupational therapists important after surgery?
- QWhat are common tests conducted in the emergency room?
- QHow do I know if my child needs an ambulance to the hospital?