Vented Patient PEA

  1. 0
    So this might sound like a stupid question but . . .

    how do you know your patient went into a PEA if he's on a vent?

    We were told in school that one of the only ways to tell if they're having a PEA is if they stop breathing. . .

    Maybe I'm just not thinking clearly about it?
  2. 20 Comments so far...

  3. 4
    No pulse
    turnforthenurseRN, MMARN, Crux1024, and 1 other like this.
  4. 0
    I would hope that anyone on a ventilator is also being monitored in other ways- EKG, pulse ox, etc. The EKG would detect the change in heart pattern and rate. The pulse ox would alarm as the Sp02 decreases.

    You would also notice cyanosis, and of course, there would be no pulse.
  5. 4
    Pulseless Electrical Activity

    "We were told in school that one of the only ways to tell if they're having a PEA is if they stop breathing. . . "

    Not a primary indication. You will learn to prioritize your observations. The lack of pulse will always take front and center stage.
    hoopschick, turnforthenurseRN, MMARN, and 1 other like this.
  6. 1
    Our EKG monitors do not always catch PEA. We notice first if the patient has an art line that suddenly loses wave form.
    hoopschick likes this.
  7. 1
    PEA-Pulseless Electrical Activity. The others are right-check for a pulse, look for your arterial pressure (which would detect no circulation), or SaO2.
    GrnTea likes this.
  8. 0
    Looks like I repeated some things-sorry! I'll have to remember to refresh for responses!
  9. 0
    wait-- pea is pulseless electrical activity, and you want to know how to know whether your patient is pulseless? or am i missing something?
  10. 0
    Quote from grntea
    wait-- pea is pulseless electrical activity, and you want to know how to know whether your patient is pulseless? or am i missing something?
    i guess i just want a quick way to tell without walking all the way into the room. for instance on my hourly rounds at night i look it, see that they're breathing, and ask if they need anything (if they're awake).

    guess for these patients i'll just walk all the way in and check a pulse. nbd.

    thanks for all that responded!
  11. 8
    "I guess I just want a quick way to tell without walking all the way into the room."

    OMG. Seriously??? INCOMING!!

    Esme12, ebear, Crux1024, and 5 others like this.


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