Monitoring the critical care patient
DOI link for Monitoring the critical care patient
Monitoring the critical care patient book
A clinical review of an intensive care patient happens periodically at planned ward rounds and unplanned time points throughout a clinical shift. These reviews integrate the history, examination findings and the trend in physiological parameters to help clinicians optimise the patient's management plan. As a novice to the critical care setting, it can be daunting to be faced by all the measuring devices attached to the patients, especially when they trigger an alarm. Daily patient observations are recorded to help the intensive care unit (ICU) team identify the trend in common physiological parameters, which are associated with changes in different body systems. In the ICU setting, monitoring should be used as an adjunct and not as a replacement for clinical assessment. Heart rate can be measured by the ECG electrodes, pulse oximeter or manually. The normal range for adults is 60–100 beats per minute. Less than 60 indicates bradycardia; more than 100 indicates tachycardia.