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August 20, 2014 Sailing

Sailing and Surgery

??????????The last thing I would have thought about surgery is eating. But foods have to be pureed with just the right protein and calories for intubated feeding, according to Melissa Williams, a dietician in the cardiac surgery unit of MCV Hospital in Richmond. While sailing the York on a quiet evening with her friend Ryan Bailey, she explained that patients have to be well fed before and after surgery to maintain a stable metabolism. “Their nourishment is based in part on their lab tests. After surgery they come back to me and I continue monitoring to ensure their protein and calorie intakes are extremely high, to produce healing.” One big fear is aspirating, which is why beds are slightly elevated. She’s modest about her role. “I’m just a consult service. I’m not calling the shots. Doctors can over-ride me.”

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