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- Jan 26 by ElenaTxIt does take a little bit of practice and experience to find pulses on some patients. I also always write down vital signs on a little piece of paper. Just make sure you don't have any personal info of the patient on that paper and then leave it somewhere. But I think it is all a matter of how much experience you have. In a little while you will assess patients without even thinking about it because it will be just normal
- Jan 27 by atlnurse477I believe practice still makes it perfect! You just need more of it and I'm sure everything will just be a piece of cake for you! Don't let these petty things discourage you!
- Jan 30 by EgriffFor my very first checkoff during my first semester, we were supposed to check each others blood pressure with the grad assistant listening on a dual tube stethoscope, and then report what we got. Well, my turn came around and I could not hear a THING! She almost failed me but finally let me go with a B. I was so upset that I cried, and I felt like I would never make it if I couldn't even find a basic BP! Now I'm in my 3rd semester of nursing school and I have to laugh to myself when I think Of it. You will be amazed at how far you've come in such a short amount of time. Things that once seemed hard will become second nature. So no stress
- Feb 4 by GrnTeaQuote from EgriffCommon problem, and often modeled by actors who don't know any better in medical dramas. The eartips of your stethoscope must be pointed anteriorly, towards the tip of your nose, because that's the anatomy of your ear canals. If you point them backward (towards the pinna, which is a misleading landmark ) the holes in the tips will be up against the wall of the ear canal and BINGO! no sound at all.For my very first checkoff during my first semester, we were supposed to check each others blood pressure with the grad assistant listening on a dual tube stethoscope, and then report what we got. Well, my turn came around and I could not hear a THING!
- Feb 4 by eatmysoxRNAs someone mentioned above, pulses are much easier to palpate when you push harder and release slowly until you feel it. Radial is toward the thumb and between two tendons. Brachial is toward the inside of the antecubital area (what you put your stethoscope over when you take a BP... If you have trouble taking a blood pressure finding this pulse before starting makes hearing it much easier). Dorsalis pedis pulses are easiest to find if you start mid foot up from the middle toe. Posterior tibial pulses are similar to radials.. Grading a pulse is also important. Saying strong or weak is not as objective as stating 1+ or 2+. Practice on yourself and anyone you can get your hands on. Try to palpate pulses bilaterally simultaneously (except the carotid of course). With practice, you'll find pulses without difficulty.
Another thing to remember is that some people have to have pedal pulses dopplered. If you can't find it, ask the patient if they have ever had that done.
As far as remembering things goes, either go head to toe or go by system. Look up head to toe assessments on here or Google. Remember to look, listen, then feel, especially with bowel sounds and the abdomen.
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