Adult intensive care unit (AICU)

The adult intensive care unit (AICU) at Royal Brompton has 18 beds and takes patients following cardiac and major thoracic surgery. 

It is managed by internationally recognised experts in their field and equipped with modern technology to help aid a speedy recovery and you can be assured of the highest standard of care after your operation. 

Pre-admission day

If you are scheduled to have an operation at our hospital with recovery in the AICU, we will invite you to a pre-admission day. 

During the pre-admission day, you will meet some of the staff who will be involved in your care and you will also be able to visit the AICU if you wish to.

The staff who will care for you

The ward is staffed in shifts and each shift is staffed by a sister or senior staff nurse. There is normally one nurse per patient, but as your condition improves and the level of care you need decreases, one nurse will look after you and one other patient.

Often patients spend some time sedated and asleep during their time on the unit.

Some patients whose surgery is less complicated, may not come to the AICU after their operation. They will spend a shorter time in our recovery unit before being transferred to the high dependency unit (HDU).


The visiting times are 10:00 am to 8:00 pm.

Exceptions to these times can be made when patients are particularly ill.  On occasions the times specified above cannot be adhered to - this is to allow us to prioritise patients' ongoing treatment. 

Limited accommodation may be available for relatives of AICU’s patients who have to travel significant distances or when patients are particularly unwell. You can get details by contacting the unit's ward administrator or the nurse in charge. 


Level 3, Sydney wing, Royal Brompton Hospital, Sydney Street, London, SW3 6NP

Telephone: 020 7351 8587