Help with a question

  1. Hi, I need some help answering a question from an exam prep book.

    Mr N has emphysema, he is very SOB, which of the following would be the MOST appropriate nursing intervention?

    A) administer oxygen at 2L via nasal prongs
    B) position upright well supported with pillows

    I would probably chose to position the patient first but I am unsure as the question states very SOB.

    the exam book has no answers so would be grateful to get your thoughts.

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    About nurse_student1

    Joined: Nov '12; Posts: 10


  3. by   RN403
    Position upright, I'm pretty sure.
  4. by   Double-Helix
    You need to understand the pathophysiology of emphysema. In emphysema, there is damage to the alveoli in the lungs. In short, the ability to release carbon dioxide and absorb oxygen is impaired. This patient is short of breath because they have retained carbon dioxide and lack of oxygen in the blood. In order to fix the shortness of breath you need to increase their PaO2 (blood oxygen). You do this by giving them supplemental oxygen.

    A patient this short of breath will become even more short up breath upon activity, even something simple like helping you reposition them. Making them move around could exacerbate the problem. Also, repositioning is only a short-term fix. This patient will still require supplemental oxygen to recover.
  5. by   Esme12
    These patients need to be allowed to find their own position of comfort and will sit hunched over the bedside stand in a tripod like position. They usually require some sort of 02 support for recovery.
  6. by   nurse_student1
    Thank you
  7. by   Esme12
    Quote from nurse_student1
    Thank you
    To get the quickest best response to your them in the nursing student assistance section. Specialty forums may take a while to answer. Many of you posts/threads a have been moved here and will give you the best response.

    Best wishes.!