LifespanActivity Time: 16 min
Tina’s second cousin was diagnosed with asthma at age 5. What would be included in your treatment plan? What factors might concern you related to compliance?
Model Note: Younger patients with asthma are treated with the same medication as adults. Some medication dosages are based on weight. She should use an inhaler with a spacer attached for proper medication administration and her caregiver should always assist her. Studies have shown that nebulizer treatments are a less efficient way to administer medication. The provider should acknowledge that she may have an asthma attack while in school, and therefore needs a note to allow her to use it as needed. The patient and her caregiver should be educated about the importance of having her inhaler close-by and how to use it.
Consider that Tina’s uncle is now 68 years old and has smoked heavily every day since he was fifteen. What would you expect to find in his respiratory assessment? How would this affect your oxygenation goals for this patient?
Model Note: He likely has decreased breath sounds on auscultation due to emphysematous changes to his lungs from smoking. As alveoli get destroyed from chronic inflammation and irritation, the surface area in the lungs is decreased. This leads to less area for gas exchange and subsequent decreased oxygen saturation. As his body adjusts to chronic oxygen deprivation, attention must be given to how much supplemental oxygen is given. The goal with someone with severe COPD is to keep oxygen saturation 88% to 92%. If he is given too much oxygen his drive to breathe with be decreased and puts him at risk for death.