Infant radiant heater: When is it necessary?

An infant radiant warmer is medical equipment used in neonatal intensive care units, aimed at providing the newborn with a comfortable thermal area that maintains their body temperature within normal levels. This is because when a baby is born from the mother's womb, which is a natural incubator, it needs to be heated.

At birth, care should be taken to maintain the baby's body temperature at normal levels, since they are susceptible to hypothermia, which would impair all their bodily and organic functions.

Infant radiant warmers are regularly required equipment in delivery rooms and neonatal care units with the aim of providing external warmth and open access to newborns. Immediately after birth, babies are routinely placed under warm, radiant light to help stabilize their temperature until they can achieve self-regulation. They are also necessary for critically ill patients who require constant nursing care.

In this equipment, heat transfer is carried out mainly by thermal radiation; that is, the source of heat energy is separated from the heat receiver and the latter (heat) travels through the air in the form of electromagnetic waves.

How is a children's radiant heater made up?

Infant radiant warmers are heating units, composed of a heat source, a skin temperature sensor, a servo control unit, and visual and audible alarms. The heating element generates radiant energy in the far IR wavelength region, but is limited to prevent thermal damage to the baby. Infrared energy is easily absorbed by the baby's fragile skin, increasing blood flow to the skin and then transferring heat to the rest of the baby's body by blood convection and tissue conduction.

What precautions should you take when using an infant radiant heater?

  • The infant radiant warmer is a high-risk medical equipment that can endanger the life of the infant. Therefore, it is recommended to use the equipment only in the operating room, neonatal nursery, pediatric intensive care unit in a hospital. The operator of the device must be specially trained and operate only under the instruction given by the doctor.
  • The operator must observe the patient's condition while the device is working. Regularly monitor and document the infant's temperature to verify that a rise or fall in the patient's temperature or other unusual condition is not occurring.
  • Please stop using the device when there is failure or malfunction.
  • Do not leave the heater in the presence of flammable anesthetic gases or other flammable materials, such as some cleaning fluids.
  • Do not leave the heater in the presence of strong electromagnetic fields.
  • Devices that are sensitive to magnetic field interference should not be used near the heater because they may be interfered with by the heater.
  • The flow of hot air can affect the thermal balance of the infant. Therefore, the heater should be placed in a room where the airflow is less than 0.3m/sec.

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