Respiratory System: A Case Study

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Clinical Outcomes
• Describe the purpose and significance of results related to diagnostic tests of the respiratory system.
There are plenty of diagnostic tests that can be done for the respiratory system. According to Lewis et al. (2014), the diagnostic tests include: blood studies of hemoglobin, hematocrit, arterial blood gases (ABGs), oximetry, end-tidal CO2 (PETCO2 – capnography), sputum studies, culture and sensitivity, gram stain, acid-fast smear and culture, cytology, radiology, chest x-ray, computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), Ventilation-perfusion (V/Q) scan, pulmonary angiogram, positron emission tomography (PET) scan, endoscopy, bronchoscopy, mediastinoscopy, lung biopsy, thoracentesis, pulmonary function
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(2014), the purposes and significance of results related to the diagnostic tests of the respiratory system includes:
- Hemoglobin: reflects the amount of hemoglobin in combination with oxygen.
- Hematocrit: reflects the ratio of red blood cells to plasma.
- Arterial blood gases (ABGs): assesses the acid-base balance, ventilation status, and determines the need for O2 therapy in the patient.
- Oximetry: monitors our arterial and venous O2 stats.
- PETCO2-capnography: assesses the body’s level of CO2 in exhaled air, which then will let us know the partial pressure of CO2 in our body.
- Culture and Sensitivity: determines whether the symptoms are bacterial related infections, helps choose the right antibiotic to prescribe, and can help evaluate the treatment.
- Gram stain: the sputum stains become gram-negative and gram-positive, to guide the patient’s therapy until the culture and sensitivity results come in.
- Acid-fast smear and culture: tests the sputum to see if there are acid-fast bacilli in it.
- Cytology: can determine if the abnormal cells are malignant or not.
- Chest x-ray: screen, diagnose, and evaluate respiratory
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The nursing management of patients with upper respiratory problems include: assessments, teaching and education, pain management, maintenance of the airway, observing for any abnormal and normal signs/symptoms, proper positioning of the patient, cold compresses, teaching activity restrictions, teaching breathing techniques and coping skills, monitoring vital signs (respiratory rate, heart rate and rhythm, and oxygen saturations), monitoring levels of consciousness, observing for signs of aspiration, identifying and avoiding triggers of allergic reactions, medication management, giving injections, relieving the symptoms, recommending patients to vaccinate, infection control, prevention of any secondary complications, tracheostomy cares, and so on (Lewis et al., 2014). The list could go on and on for what a nurse can do to help manage patients with upper respiratory problems. According to Lewis et al. (2014), nurses should encourage patients to get rest, plenty of fluids, have a proper diet, take the recommended medications, and to ask questions. I know as a nursing student, that I will