Learning a Thing or Two About Evidence-Based Practice
After slaving for hours putting together my portfolio, I am
happy to say that I was passed on to the next stage of interviews for the job I
spoke about last week. There are a few more interviews to go, but I am doing
the best I can to stay focused on the big picture.
Now that I am out of school, I have been trying to connect
with nursing on a different level. Here and there I have been reading different
online journal articles about various nursing topics. I find it a great way to
stay informed on new clinical findings, as well as brush up on old information
One article I read was about blood administration. It was
interesting to see that a great deal of research was done on transfusions at
different hemoglobin levels. Surprisingly enough those patients transfused with
hemoglobin levels less than 7 actually had better outcomes than patients
transfused between 8 and 10 (who were expected to decrease to even lower levels).
These studied were based on pathological decreases in hemoglobin and not from
acute blood loss. Resilience was the first thing that came to my mind after I
read these findings. The body really doesn’t need any help unless it is
completely overwhelmed. Sometimes a certain system or group of organ systems
may be weak, but there is often a strong shift back towards health that the
body can make on its own.
Another article I read was about total parenteral nutrition
(TPN). Although TPN can dramatically improve a patient’s situation, it was
amazing to see all of the associated risks. The one I most remember was dumping
syndrome. When a patient is too rapidly switched from TPN back to normal
gastric feedings, the stomach can go through a dumping process, empting its
contents too quickly into the small intestine. This can cause extreme
discomfort and diarrhea, leading to adverse outcomes such as hypovolemia and acid/base
It was nice to get an opportunity to plug my brain back into
learning mode. I think this whole article reading idea will continue, especially
since I can use most of the information in my own practice. I mean, isn’t that
was nursing is about, life-long learning through evidenced-based practice… I
think I might be on to something!