Opioid Case Study

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I. Inadequate Monitoring of Opioid-Induced Respiratory Depression Opioids are a category of pain medications that reduce the stimulus of pain signals sent from the brain. Within this category are medications such as hydrocodone, oxycodone, morphine, codeine, and other similar drugs. These medications are used to treat mild to severe pain depending on dosages and type of opioid given. With the reduced perception of pain also comes a plethora of unpleasant symptoms such as drowsiness, mental confusion, nausea, constipation, and, depending upon the amount of drug taken, can depress respiration. However, many experience a euphoric experience after administration that drives them to abuse opioids. This abuse leads to addiction or overdose which …show more content…

This helps provide more patient centered care. Guidelines to follow after opioid administration will vary by hospital but it is still necessary to use sedation scales with acceptable measures of reliability and validity for pain management. The use of sedation scales should be used with consistent monitoring of respirations. Pasero (2009) emphasizes that a comprehensive evaluation of respiratory status that includes depth, regularity, rate, and noisiness of respiration in addition to sedation assessment is essential to decision making during opioid administration for pain management. Respirations should be counted for a full minute while the patient is at rest in a quiet and relaxed environment. There are many sedation scales which will vary depending on the hospital, some include the Ramsey Sedation Scale, Motor Activity Assessment Scale, Sedation-Agitation Scale, Richmond Agitation and Sedation Scale, The Hartwig Scale, and more. These scales measure factors such as level of agitation, levels of arousability, quality of responses, and drowsiness. Technological monitoring techniques to use as support include continuous pulse oximetry and capnography, which can both be effective for unattended advancing sedation and respiratory depression, (Jarzyna et al.1,

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