Is this a valid nursing diagnosis?

  1. 0
    I am supposed to provide 3 nursing diagnoses for a pt w/ angina pectoris.

    1- pain r/t myocardial ischemia
    2-Risk for decreased cardiac output r/t mechanical and/or electrical dysfunction of the heart
    3-Anxiety r/t angina aeb pt stating " Every time that I get angina, it makes me nervous that I will have a heart attack"

    ?help?
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  4. 1
    valid, but you're missing the "as evidenced by" for 1 and 2. what signs and symptoms is the pt exhibiting to lead you to your diagnosis?
    Student4Now likes this.
  5. 0
    you say that the patient's medical diagnosis is angina pectoris. so, we need to start from there and understand the underlying pathophysiology of what is going on with that in order to properly format your nursing diagnostic statements. angina pectoris occurs when there is coronary artery disease (cad). cad is atherosclerosis of the coronary arteries which causes their narrowing that results in an inadequate blood supply to the heart itself. it often takes years to occur and chest pain, specifically, angina pectoris (ischemia) is a symptom of it and eventually heart damage and heart attack happens. the symptoms of cad include (in order of appearance):
    • angina that may radiate to the arm, neck, jaw or shoulder after physical activity, emotional stimulation, ingestion of a large meal, exposure to the cold or while asleep
    • nausea, vomiting
    • fainting
    • sweating
    • increased episodes of angina that occur with more frequency and duration and can be brought on more easily (indicative of the worsening of the disease process)
    • cool extremities
    • xanthoma (yellow plaque or nodule on the eyelids near the inner canthus)
    • arteriovenous nicking of the eye
    • hypertension
    • positive levine sign (holding the fist to the chest)
    • decreased and absent peripheral pulses
    here is information about these conditions:
    diagnosis is always based upon the signs and symptoms that the patient has. the only evidence that you have provided that i can work with is that this patient has angina pectoris which i know means that they have some degree of cad except i do not know what other physical evidence they have of it. i worked on a cardiac unit early in my nursing career where we had a lot of patients who would get chest pain. along with their chest pain they usually got anxious, blood pressure changes, dyspnea and tachycardia. i made up an assessment sheet for myself to watch for all these signs and symptoms because i used to sit at their bedside as i gave them nitroglycerin tablets, took their vital signs and listened to their hearts and lungs so i wouldn't forget anything i needed for my documentation. (i still have the sheet and i am looking at it now.) you did list with one of your diagnostic statements "every time that i get angina, it makes me nervous that i will have a heart attack" which tells me that this episode of chest pain is not the first one and that it has occurred before. someone has told the patient that the angina is a forerunner of what may happen--a heart attack--so they do know something about what is going on. my next question is do they have any of the risk factors?
    • family history of heart disease or relatives that have died of a heart attack
    • high cholesterol level
    • history of, or do they smoke
    • diabetes
    • use of hormones
    • obesity
    • sedentary lifestyle
    • stress
    • elevated homocystine levels
    now, lets look at your nursing diagnoses. . .first i need to re-sequence them.

    • risk for decreased cardiac output r/t mechanical and/or electrical dysfunction of the heart
      • this is actually not a risk anymore. the decreased cardiac output is here and it is here to stay. this person's heart is damaged by the effects of cad which is a chronic disease and it is going to get worse as time marches on. this patient will eventually need ptca or cardiac bypass or they will end up having a heart attack. the angina pectoris is a symptom of the cad that they have. the doctor just didn't tell you about the cad. when you see angina pectoris you should automatically connect it with cad.
      • the related factor (cause, reason) for the decreased cardiac output [we're getting into the pathophysiology here] is that the heart tissue itself isn't getting enough oxygen. electrical dysfunction is a result of that and other mechanisms going on.
      • symptoms of angina that are also symptoms of decreased cardiac output are tachycardia, palpitations, dyspnea, change (usually a rise) in blood pressure and, of course, this patients anxiety.
      • your diagnosis should read something like this: decreased cardiac output r/t myocardial ischemia aeb [need to verify that these were present: tachycardia, palpitations, dyspnea, elevated blood pressure and anxiety]
    • pain r/t myocardial ischemia
      • the correct nanda diagnosis is acute pain.
      • your related factor is correct.
      • it is important to assess pain so that it is measurable:
        • assessment and description of pain includes the following:
          • where the pain is located
          • how long it lasts
          • how often it occurs
          • a description of it (sharp, dull, stabbing, aching, burning, throbbing)
            • have the patient rank the pain on a scale of 0 to 10 with 0 being no pain and 10 being the worst pain
          • what triggers the pain
          • what relieves the pain
          • observe their physical responses
            • behavioral: changing body position, moaning, sighing, grimacing, withdrawal, crying, restlessness, muscle twitching, irritability, immobility
            • sympathetic response: pallor, elevated b/p, dilated pupils, skeletal muscle tension, dyspnea, tachycardia, diaphoresis
            • parasympathetic response: pallor, decreased b/p, bradycardia, nausea and vomiting, weakness, dizziness, loss of consciousness
      • your diagnosis should read something like this: acute pain r/t myocardial ischemia aeb [pain of __ out of 10 on scale of 0 to 10]
    • anxiety r/t angina aeb pt stating "every time that i get angina, it makes me nervous that i will have a heart attack"
      • anxiety is apprehension, dread, fear or threat of the unknown. the related factors of the diagnostic statements must always attempt to explain how or why the problem exists as close to the cause as possible. although anxiety has a lot of physical symptoms it is primarily one of the psychosocial diagnoses. look at your evidence supporting it: every time that i get angina, it makes me nervous that i will have a heart attack. that translates, to me, that the patient is afraid of something and that the chest pain represents a threat to their life or health. now, you interacted with this patient, so you know what was said between you. there is another nursing diagnosis called death anxiety where patients are in fear of dying. if it is appropriate, use that diagnosis. otherwise, this should be re-written as anxiety r/t threat to health aeb patient's statement that "every time i get angina, it makes me nervous that i will have a heart attack."
    to recap, in priority order (by maslow's hierarchy of needs) the 3 diagnoses are:
    1. decreased cardiac output r/t myocardial ischemia aeb [need to verify that these were present: tachycardia, palpitations, dyspnea, elevated blood pressure and anxiety]
    2. acute pain r/t myocardial ischemia aeb [pain of __ out of 10 on scale of 0 to 10]
    3. anxiety r/t threat to health aeb patient's statement that "every time i get angina, it makes me nervous that i will have a heart attack."
  6. 0
    Thank you! I don't know what was going through my head when I put risk for decreased cardiac output, because the pt already has decreased cardiac output. Such a simple mistake on that one, but had you not brought it to my attention, it would have stayed there...The question was quite vague as it only asked "what are 3 nursing diagnoses for a pt w/ angina pectoris." I think that we are supposed to fill in the blanks, which lead me to anxiety and the pt statement.
  7. 0
    When you are given these exercises to do and all they give you is a medical diagnosis, the first thing you have to do is break the medical diagnosis down into its component signs and symptoms and look up the pathophysiology. The signs and symptoms are the manifestations of the pathophysiology and will become the AEBs for the nursing diagnoses. The pathophysiology gives you the reasoning for the related factors on the nursing diagnoses that you end up using. I did not know this was a hypothetical patient. I was just responding to your question. Otherwise, based on the patient statement I would have suggested using Deficient Knowledge, CAD R/T lack of information AEB patient need for information about disease and how it progresses.
  8. 0
    Decreased Cardiac Output r/t myocardial ischemia AEB ?????

    I know the pt has decreased cardiac output b/c he has myocardial ischemia, but the assignment didn't give signs and symptoms so would I just assume that the pt is experiencing things typical to this certain disease?

    Deficient Knowledge, CAD R/T lack of information AEB patient need for information about disease and how it progresses.
    I totally understand this one, b/c every pt needs info on their disease.

    Acute Pain r/t myocardial ischemia AEB ??? Once again shld I just use something general such as "AEB diaphoresis, nausea, Levine's sign"?

    *Altered tissue perfusion(myocardial) r/t narrowing of the coronary arteries and associated with artherosclerosis, spasm, or thrombosis

    * taken from Diseases and Disorders
    Last edit by Student4Now on Jun 30, '09 : Reason: left out a word :P
  9. 1
    decreased cardiac output r/t myocardial ischemia aeb chest pain.

    i know the pt has decreased cardiac output b/c he has myocardial ischemia, but the assignment didn't give signs and symptoms so would i just assume that the pt is experiencing things typical to this certain disease?
    i didn't know this was a scenario for a hypothetical patient. i will sometimes give a list of symptoms to refresh student's minds in hopes that they may have seen one or more of them in the patient and just forgotten to write them down. if this was a scenario then all the signs and symptoms they wanted you to be aware of were given to you. still, it doesn't hurt to know what a textbook has to say.
    acute pain r/t myocardial ischemia aeb chest pain. once again shld i just use something general such as "aeb diaphoresis, nausea, levine's sign"?
    angina pectoris is a medical diagnosis. in nursing language it is chest pain. the other stuff is from a textbook.
    *altered tissue perfusion(myocardial) r/t narrowing of the coronary arteries and associated with artherosclerosis, spasm, or thrombosis
    yes, you could use this diagnosis, but. . .coronary spasm would be manifested by continued severe chest pain and that is not what is going on here. coronary thrombosis is an mi and that is not what is going on here either. read the pathophysiology of cad along with its symptoms. match the patient's symptoms (chest pain) to where he is in the chain of atherosclerosis to mi. he's obviously got some narrowing of the coronary arteries going on, but the degree of it will be unknown without further testing. if his chest pain happens now and again with activity his cad isn't as bad as someone coming in grabbing at their chest claiming they are having crushing chest pain, sweating and complaining of the worst indigestion of their life (symptoms of an mi).
    Student4Now likes this.
  10. 0
    Daytonite -- when do you get a rest!
  11. 1
    Ha! Ha! In between the posts I was actually over at the local hospital getting some x-rays and I have been sitting here looking at sweater patterns (I knit and crochet when I am bored) and watching Episode 1 of Star Wars on Spike. I kind of know this stuff, or at least where to look it up in my books around here. I used to work on a medical cardiac unit.
    DolceVita likes this.
  12. 0
    There wasn't a scenario. It just asked us to come up with 3 nursing diagnoses for a pt with angina pectoris. Which I thought was kind of weird b/c they gave us no pt. specifics.


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