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March 2012 - Volume 7 - Issue 2
pp: 4-48


Heart Beats

Understanding wide-complex tachycardias

Barto, Donna

Nursing Critical Care. 7(2):6-8, March 2012.

This article focuses on determining the origin of a wide-complex tachycardia based on the 12-lead ECG, so that the patient can get the correct treatment.

Topics in Progressive Care

Unraveling the mystery of postpolio syndrome

LaRocco, Susan A.

Nursing Critical Care. 7(2):9-11, March 2012.

Polio survivors can experience effects of the disease many years after they've recovered. As survivors of polio age, you're likely to see more of them in acute care hospitals, both for problems related to PPS and for unrelated illnesses such as cardiac problems and complications of diabetes.

Research Rounds

Are nurses dealing with quality bundle overload?

Whelchel, Catherine E.; Pynn, Mary F.; Lizakowski, Susan E.

Nursing Critical Care. 7(2):12-15, March 2012.

The transition to results-based care and greater public awareness of outcomes has increased hospitals' focus on quality bundles associated with evidence-based protocols. This article focuses on how nurses can deal with the time constraints and other problems of using multiple bundles.

Decoding Genetics

Genetic aspects of migraine headaches

Pestka, Elizabeth L.; Nash, Virginia R.

Nursing Critical Care. 7(2):16-18, March 2012.

Up to 90% of people with migraines have a family history of this condition, but genetic contributions to migraines are complex. Learn about the role of genetics in assessing and caring for a patient with migraines.


Prone positioning for patients with ARDS

Hudack, Michael E.

Nursing Critical Care. 7(2):20-24, March 2012.

Although not common in ICUs, proning may help improve oxygenation for patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome. Find out about the science behind this technique and how to incorporate it into a plan of care.

PCA BY PROXY: Taking the patient out of Patient-Controlled Analgesia

D'Arcy, Yvonne

Nursing Critical Care. 7(2):25-29, March 2012.

Patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) by proxy—activation of the PCA pump by anyone other than the patient, whether authorized or not—is a controversial practice. Authorized agent PCA by proxy has been used successfully in pediatric settings. This article describes the dangers of the practice and steps to ensure that PCA is used safely.

Recognizing and preventing acute kidney injury

Kelso, Lynn A.

Nursing Critical Care. 7(2):36-41, March 2012.

Hospitalized patients are at increased risk of developing acute kidney injury and renal failure. Learn how to recognize problems and intervene appropriately.

Halt the downward spiral of traumatic hypovolemic shock

Strickler, Jeff

Nursing Critical Care. 7(2):42-47, March 2012.

Hypovolemia is the most common cause of shock, and can result from massive blood loss during trauma, gastrointestinal bleeding, ruptured ectopic pregnancy, fluid losses and third-spacing from burn injuries, or dehydration from frequent vomiting or diarrhea. This article describes how to recognize and respond to this life-threatening condition.