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C S Ts A N D C S F A s I N T H E S U R G I C A L E N V I R O N M E N T


Surgeons, the surgical first assistant provides aid in exposure,

hemostasis and other technical functions that will help the

surgeon carry out a safe operation with optimal results for

the patient. These functions include, but are not limited

to, positioning of the patient, suturing and closure of body

planes and skin, and the application of wound dressings.



The CST is responsible for three phases of surgical patient

care, or surgical case management, with minimal direction or

supervision from other surgical team members. Some duties

of the CST in each phase of case management include:

Preoperative Case Management

Scrubbing and donning sterile gown and gloves

Gathering necessary equipment and supplies

Opening sterile supplies

Donning personal protective equipment

Organizing the sterile field for use

Counting necessary items

Assisting team members during entry

to the sterile field

Exposing the operative site with sterile drapes

Intraoperative Case Management

Passing instrumentation, equipment and supplies to

the surgeon and surgical assistant

Preparing and handling pharmaceuticals

Predicting needs of the patient and surgeon and

preparing necessary items

Counting necessary items

Caring for specimens

Applying dressings

Postoperative Case Management

Maintaining the sterile field until the patient is


Removing used instruments, equipment and supplies

following use

Preparing the OR for the next patient