Below is a summary of Pam’s electronic health record (EHR) activity while she is in the hospital. As a nurse, in addition to getting Pam prepared for the tests and procedures ordered by the physician, you are responsible for obtaining, reading and monitoring her vital signs. Using her EHR, Virtual Physical Exam (VPE) and Internet research, answer the questions and be prepared to discuss the responses with the rest of Pam’s healthcare team.
Review Pam’s Outpatient EHR: You are responsible for taking Pam’s vital signs, including determining her oxygen saturation (SpO2), which you note on her EHR. Pam’s SpO2 is low, as indicated in blue. What is Pam’s SpO2?
Internet Research: How is oxygen saturation (SpO2) measured?
Internet Research: What causes low SpO2 (also referred to as hypoxemia)?
Review Pam’s VPE: The pulmonologist orders another spirometry test after Pam uses her bronchodilator, and the results are similar. Based on the results, the pulmonologist orders a pulmonary plethysmography and a diffusing capacity (DLCO) test. Using VPE, explain these tests.
Review Pam’s VPE: What do Pam’s results indicate?
Internet Research: You help prepare Pam for an arterial blood gas (ABG) test, which was also ordered by the pulmonologist. Explain the purpose of this test to Pam.
Internet Research: How is an ABG test administered?