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Terms in this set (44)

Peripheral artery disease (PAD [previously called peripheral vascular disease]) refers to arteries that have thickened, have lost elasticity due to calcification of the artery walls, and are narrowed by atherosclerotic plaques (made up of fat and fibrin). Pain due to decreased blood flow is the most common symptom of PAD. Cramping pain in the muscles of the legs during exercise, known as intermittent claudication, is usually relieved with rest. However, with critical arterial narrowing, pain can be present at rest and is typically described as "burning pain" that is worsened by elevating the legs and improved when the legs are dependent. Skin becomes cool, dry, shiny, and hairless (due to lack of oxygen). Ulcers and gangrene occur usually at the most distal part of the body, where circulation is poorest. Clients should be advised that a progressive walking program will aid the development of collateral circulation.

(Options 1, 2, and 3) Chronic venous insufficiency refers to inadequate venous blood return to the heart. Too much venous blood remains in the lower legs, and venous pressure increases. This increased venous pressure inhibits arterial blood flow to the area, resulting in inadequate supply of oxygen and nutrients to area cells and the development of stasis ulcers, which are typically found around the medial side of the ankle. By the end of the day or after prolonged standing, the legs become edematous with dull pain due to venous engorgement. The skin of the lower leg becomes thick with a brown pigmentation.

Educational objective:
The pain of peripheral artery disease is arterial in nature and results from decreased blood flow to the legs. It is made worse with leg elevation. Arterial ulcers are formed at the most distal end of the body. Venous ulcers form over the medial malleolus, and compression bandaging is needed to reduce the pressure.
1, 3, & 4

Individuals with type I or II diabetes mellitus are at increased risk for developing an infection or ulcer on their feet. This is due to the chronic complication of peripheral neuropathy, which results from nerve damage in the extremities.

Instructions for diabetic foot care include:

Wash feet daily with warm water and mild soap; test water temperature with thermometer beforehand. Gently pat feet dry, particularly between the toes (Option 2). Use lanolin to prevent dry and cracked skin, but do not apply between the toes.
Inspect for abrasions, cuts, or sores. Have others inspect the feet if eyesight is poor.
To prevent injury, use cotton or lamb's wool to separate overlapping toes. Cut toenails straight across and use a nail file to file along the curves of the toes. Avoid going barefoot and wear sturdy leather shoes. Use mild foot powder to absorb perspiration and wear clean, absorbent socks with seams aligned (Options 1, 3, and 4).
Avoid using over-the-counter products (eg, iodine, alcohol, strong adhesives) on cuts or abrasions (Option 5).
To improve circulation, do not sit with legs crossed or for extended periods, avoid tight-fitting garments, and perform daily exercise.
Report other types of problems such as infections or athlete's foot immediately.
Educational objective:
Individuals with type I or II diabetes mellitus are at increased risk for developing an infection or ulcer on their feet due to the chronic complication of peripheral neuropathy. Clients should keep feet clean, dry, and free from irritation.

After a mastectomy, an important goal is restoring function in the client's affected arm. Measures to promote function are initiated immediately after surgery. Elevating the affected arm to heart level (eg, on a pillow) is crucial to reduce fluid retention and prevent lymphedema in the affected arm (Option 2). Hand and arm exercises are implemented gradually, beginning with finger flexion and extension. These activities maintain muscle tone, prevent contractures, and improve lymph and blood circulation, which promote function and also prevent lymphedema. The return of full range of motion in the affected arm is desired within 4-6 weeks.

Additional nursing care for clients after a mastectomy includes keeping the client in semi-Fowler position and placing a sign over the bed that specifies, "No blood pressure, venipuncture, or injections on left arm," as these actions could cause lymphedema.

(Option 1) Ice reduces inflammation, swelling, and pain. Although this reduces discomfort, it does not directly contribute to restoring arm function and is not the priority.

(Option 3) Frequent ambulation is not the priority in the initial postoperative period as it does not facilitate lymph drainage or help restore arm function.

(Option 4) Pneumatic compression devices may be used to facilitate lymph drainage when lymphedema is present. Elevating and exercising the arm help prevent lymphedema from developing and are priority in this client.

Educational objective:
A priority goal for a client following a mastectomy is restoring function in the affected arm. Elevation of the arm and institution of arm exercises begin immediately following surgery to prevent lymphedema.
1, 3, 4, & 5
A hemorrhagic stroke occurs when a blood vessel ruptures in the brain and causes bleeding into the brain tissue or subarachnoid space. Seizure activity may occur due to increased intracranial pressure (ICP) (Option 3). During the acute phase, a client may develop dysphagia. To prevent aspiration, the client must remain NPO until a swallow function screen reveals no deficits (Option 4). The nurse should perform neurological assessments (eg, level of consciousness, pupillary response) at regular intervals and report any acute changes (Option 5).

Preventing activities that increase ICP or blood pressure will minimize further bleeding. The nurse should:

Reduce stimulation, maintain a quiet and dimly lit environment, limit visitors
Administer stool softeners to reduce strain during bowel movements (Option 1)
Reduce exertion, maintain strict bed rest, assist with activities of daily living
Maintain head in midline position to improve jugular venous return to the heart
(Option 2) Enoxaparin is an anticoagulant used to prevent venous thromboembolism (VTE). Anticoagulants are contraindicated in clients with hemorrhagic stroke; the nurse should question any prescriptions that increase risk for bleeding. A client with hemorrhagic stroke should instead receive nonpharmacologic interventions (eg, compression stockings) to prevent VTE.

Educational objective:
A hemorrhagic stroke occurs when a blood vessel ruptures in the brain and causes bleeding. The nurse should perform frequent neurological assessments, keep the client NPO, maintain seizure precautions and strict bed rest, and limit any activity that may increase bleeding (eg, anticoagulant administration) or intracranial pressure (eg, stimulation, straining during bowel movements).
1, 4, & 5
In pyloric stenosis, there is gradual hypertrophy of the pylorus until symptom onset at age 3-5 weeks. It is common in first-born boys and the etiology is unclear. Pyloric stenosis presents with postprandial projectile vomiting (ejected up to 3 feet) followed by hunger (eg, "hungry vomiter"). This is clearly distinguished from the "wet burps" infants have due to a weak lower esophageal sphincter. The emesis is nonbilious as the obstruction is proximal to the bile duct. Infants have poor weight gain and are often dehydrated (eg, sunken fontanelle, decreased skin turgor, delayed capillary refill).

The amount of milk consumed (particularly with bottle feedings) along with the mother's technique (mainly adequate burping) should be assessed to ensure there is no excessive air swallowing or overfeeding as an etiology.

(Option 2) At times, formula intolerance or allergy is suspected initially when the infant first starts vomiting. However, celiac disease or gluten enteropathy is related to intolerance to gluten, a protein in barley, rye, oats, and wheat (BROW). Clients with celiac disease cannot eat these foods. A 3-week-old infant would only consume milk; this history would not be a factor at this time.

(Option 3) Physiological hyperbilirubinemia occurs due to the newborn's immature liver that is unable to metabolize hemoglobin byproducts. This is a "normal" finding that is unrelated to pyloric stenosis.

Educational objective:
Pyloric stenosis is a hypertrophy of the pyloric sphincter that eventually causes complete obstruction. Classic signs include projectile nonbilious vomiting, an olive-shaped right upper quadrant mass, weight loss, dehydration, and/or electrolyte imbalance (metabolic alkalosis).