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First nursing care plan


Good evening, I am working on my first care plan and my patient was diagnosed with acute diverticulitis. I am trying to find the proper NANDA certified nursing diagnosis for the abdominal pain he is feeling. I need some help peoples!!!

Coffee Nurse, BSN, RN

Specializes in NICU. Has 10 years experience.

Good evening, I am working on my first care plan and my patient was diagnosed with acute diverticulitis. I am trying to find the proper NANDA certified nursing diagnosis for the abdominal pain he is feeling. I need some help peoples!!!

Please try coming up with your own answer first and then posting here for feedback if you need it.

roser13, ASN, RN

Specializes in Med/Surg, Ortho, ASC. Has 17 years experience.

If we do your very first for you, how would you ever learn?!

The "peoples" did their own very first care plan and they think you should too :yes:

Gather your resources, textbook, lecture notes, etc., and sit down and bang it out!

P.S. If you're writing your first care plan, something tells me that your username should not be describing you as a nurse. Just a thought.

Edited by roser13

Nurse SMS, MSN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care; Cardiac; Professional Development. Has 10 years experience.

Remember to focus on symptomatology from a holistic point of view, what those symptoms indicate as well as put the patient at risk for and what you, as a nurse, can do about those things.

Good luck on your homework. You will have to work through the thought process yourself if you are going to start thinking like a nurse. We all had to do our first care plan at one point. This is your moment. Go get 'em. Oh, and remember...this is not a site to get your homework done FOR you. Thanks :)

Edited by not.done.yet

We don't do your homework for you here. We will bend over backwards to help you learn how to learn, though, but we need to see your evidence first. What do you know about your patient? What did YOU assess? Do not regurgitate the medical diagnosis and leave it at that.

There is no magic list of medical diagnoses from which you can derive nursing diagnoses. There is no one from column A, one from column B list out there. Nursing diagnosis does NOT result from medical diagnosis, period. As physicians make medical diagnoses based on evidence, so do nurses make nursing diagnoses based on evidence.

You wouldn't think much of a doc who came into the exam room on your first visit ever and announced, "You've got leukemia. We'll start you on chemo. Now, let's draw some blood." Facts first, diagnosis second, plan of care next. This works for medical assessment and diagnosis and plan of care, and for nursing assessment, diagnosis, and plan of care. Don't say, "This is the patient's medical diagnosis and I need a nursing diagnosis," it doesn't work like that.

You don't "pick" or "choose" a nursing diagnosis from some list. You MAKE a nursing diagnosis the same way a physician makes a medical diagnosis, from evaluating evidence and observable/measurable data.

This is one of the most difficult concepts for some nursing students to incorporate into their understanding of what nursing is, which is why I strive to think of multiple ways to say it. Yes, nursing is legally obligated to implement some aspects of the medical plan of care. (Other disciplines may implement other parts, like radiology, or therapy, or ...) That is not to say that everything nursing assesses, is, and does is part of the medical plan of care. It is not. That's where nursing dx comes in.

A nursing diagnosis statement translated into regular English goes something like this: "I'm making the nursing diagnosis of/I think my patient has ____(diagnosis)_____________ . He has this because he has ___(related factor(s))__. I know this because I see/assessed/found in the chart (as evidenced by) __(defining characteristics)________________."

"Related to" means "caused by," not something else. In many nursing diagnoses it is perfectly acceptable to use a medical diagnosis as a causative factor. For example, "acute pain" includes as related factors "Injury agents: e.g. (which means, "for example") biological, chemical, physical, psychological." You can thumb through your NANDA-I 2015-2017 and find lots and lots of medical diagnoses as related factors. They are the origins of nursing diagnoses, however.

To make a nursing diagnosis, you must be able to demonstrate at least one "defining characteristic." Defining characteristics for all approved nursing diagnoses are found in the NANDA-I 2015-2017 (current edition). $39 paperback, $23 for your Kindle at Amazon, free 2-day delivery for students. This edition also includes an EXCELLENT FAQs section aimed at students.

NEVER make an error about this again---and, as a bonus, be able to defend appropriate use of medical diagnoses as related factors to your faculty. Won't they be surprised!

If you do not have the NANDA-I 2015-2017, you are cheating yourself out of the best reference for this you could have. I don't care if your faculty forgot to put it on the reading list. Get it now. Free 2-day shipping for students from Amazon. When you get it out of the box, first put little sticky tabs on the sections:

1, health promotion (teaching, immunization....)

2, nutrition (ingestion, metabolism, hydration....)

3, elimination and exchange (this is where you'll find bowel, bladder, renal, pulmonary...)

4, activity and rest (sleep, activity/exercise, cardiovascular and pulmonary tolerance, self-care and neglect...)

5, perception and cognition (attention, orientation, cognition, communication...)

6, self-perception (hopelessness, loneliness, self-esteem, body image...)

7, role (family relationships, parenting, social interaction...)

8, sexuality (dysfunction, ineffective pattern, reproduction, childbearing process, maternal-fetal dyad...)

9, coping and stress (post-trauma responses, coping responses, anxiety, denial, grief, powerlessness, sorrow...)

10, life principles (hope, spiritual, decisional conflict, nonadherence...)

11, safety (this is where you'll find your wound stuff, shock, infection, tissue integrity, dry eye, positioning injury, SIDS, trauma, violence, self mutilization...)

12, comfort (physical, environmental, social...)

13, growth and development (disproportionate, delayed...)

Now, if you are ever again tempted to make a diagnosis first and cram facts into it second, at least go to the section where you think your diagnosis may lie and look at the table of contents at the beginning of it. Something look tempting? Look it up and see if the defining characteristics match your assessment findings. If so... there's a match. CONGRATULATIONS! You made a nursing diagnosis! :anpom: If not... keep looking. Eventually you will find it easier to do it the other way round, but this is as good a way as any to start getting familiar with THE reference for the professional nurse.

About Risk for” diagnoses:

First: "Risk for" nursing diagnoses are very often properly placed first, as safety ranks above all of the physiological needs in Maslow's hierarchy. This poster is asking specifically for a ranking in Maslow's hierarchy. What are nurses for if not to protect a patient's safety?

Second: It is a fallacy that "risk for..." nursing diagnosis is somehow lesser or not "real." If you look in your NANDA-I 2015-2017, there is a whole section on Safety, and almost all of the nursing diagnoses in that section are "risk for..." diagnoses. However, because NANDA-I has learned that nursing faculty is often responsible for this fallacy, the language on these has recently been revisited and was changed to include "Vulnerable to ..." in the defining characteristics the current edition.

Third: This sort of assignment is often made not only to see if somebody can recite rote information but to elicit your thought processes and see how well you can defend your reasoning. There is often no single priority; defend yours. Your faculty will be gratified to see you try and make your case.

So, what is the reasoning you have applied to your ranking, as applied to a specific patient or to people in general?

Two more books to you that will save your bacon all the way through nursing school, starting now. The first is NANDA, NOC, and NIC Linkages: Nursing Diagnoses, Outcomes, and Interventions. This is a wonderful synopsis of major nursing interventions, suggested interventions, and optional interventions related to nursing diagnoses. For example, on pages 113-115 you will find Confusion, Chronic. You will find a host of potential outcomes, the possibility of achieving of which you can determine based on your personal assessment of this patient. Major, suggested, and optional interventions are listed, too; you get to choose which you think you can realistically do, and how you will evaluate how they work if you do choose them.It is important to realize that you cannot just copy all of them down; you have to pick the ones that apply to your individual patient. Also available at Amazon. Check the publication date-- the 2006 edition does not include many current NANDA-I 2015-2017 nursing diagnoses and includes several that have been withdrawn for lack of evidence.

The 2nd book is Nursing Interventions Classification (NIC) is in its 6th edition, 2013, edited by Bulechek, Butcher, Dochterman, and Wagner. Mine came from Amazon. It gives a really good explanation of why the interventions are based on evidence, and every intervention is clearly defined and includes references if you would like to know (or if you need to give) the basis for the nursing (as opposed to medical) interventions you may prescribe. Another beauty of a reference. Don't think you have to think it all up yourself-- stand on the shoulders of giants.

I appreciate the positive feedback, I'm going to do the best that I can to retrieve these books.