Concept Map

Topics: Asthma, Respiratory physiology, Peak flow meter Pages: 2 (461 words) Published: October 4, 2012
Medical Surgical


Signs & Symptoms
-Asthma is illustrated by outbursts of shortness of breath, wheezing, and coughing and the production of thick, tenacious sputum. -Only as the attack begins to subside can the client expectorate large quantities of thick, stringy mucus. The skin is usually pale. -During a severe attack, the nurse may observe cyanosis of the client’s lips and nail beds.

-Asthma is usually a reversible obstructive disease of the lower airway. Inflammation of the airway and hyper responsiveness of the airway to internal or external stimuli are characteristics of asthma. -Acute asthma results from increasing airway obstruction caused by bronchospasm and bronchoconstriction, inflammation and edema of the lining of the bronchi and bronchioles and production of thick mucus that can plug the airway. Because alveoli cannot expel air, they hyperinflate and trap air in the lungs. The client breathes faster, blowing off excess CO2. Other pathiohysiologic changes include interference with gas exchange, poor perfusion, possible atelectasis. -Allergic asthma causes the immunoglobin E (IgE) inflammatory process.

-Symptomatic treatment is given at the time of the attack.
-If the history and diagnostic test indicate allergy as the causative factor, treatment includes avoidance of the allergen, desensitization, or antihistamine therapy. -Oxygen may be nessacry is cyanosis occurs.

-Rescue therapy medications treat acute episodes of asthma. Maintence therapy is a daily regimen designed to prevent and control symptoms/

-Chest auscultation reveals expiratory and sometimes inspiratory wheezes and diminished breath sounds. Results of pulmonary function studies may be abnormal with total lung capacity and functional residual volume increased secondary to...
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