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Journal of Nursing : Recognition

  • Mystery Diagnosis: Recognizing Serotonin Syndrome
    Wendy Blatchley
    Serotonin syndrome (SS) is a rare condition that is believed to be induced by ingestion of serotonergic medications, leading to an increased serotonin level. Although many medications are thought to be responsible, some of the more common are antidepressants and opioids. There are no definitive tests to confirm SS, therefore diagnosis is based on clinical findings and can be somewhat difficult. A triad of symptoms, neuromuscular hyperactivity, altered mental status, and autonomic hyperactivity, are considered the hallmark signs, but are not present in all cases. Symptoms can vary from mild and almost undetectable to severe and life threatening. Three diagnostic systems are currently utilized to assist with diagnosis if SS is suspected: the Hunter, Sternbach, and Radomski criteria. A diagnosis of SS should prompt discontinuation of the suspected offending agent. Increased awareness of this issue is needed, including symptoms and risk factors, so that the advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) may promptly recognize and diagnosis this condition to avoid further complications. Completing a thorough history and physical, along with accurate medication reconciliation can assist the APRN in identifying high risk patients. While there is still so much about SS that remains unknown, current information and education on this issue will ensure the APRN is providing safe and high-quality care. Databases utilized were CINAHL, PubMed, and ScienceDirect. These databases provide access to numerous nursing, biomedical, and scientific journals and were useful in locating up-to-date, peer reviewed research on this subject.
  • Magnet Recognition: Is the Designation worth the Journey?
    Gina Quinn RN,BSN,CPAN Jennifer Papapavlou RN, BSN, CCRN Heather Miller RN, BSN, CPAN
    Currently, only eight percent of hospitals nationwide hold the title of Magnet Recognition (AHA, Fast Facts on US Hospitals, 2019) and even less receive consecutive designations. Eight percent is a marginally small number, especially when it comes to credentialing hospitals as havens for quality patient outcomes and centers of nursing excellence. The process of becoming a Magnet designated hospital is complex and grueling; requiring submissions of data, site visits, and taxes hospital resources in doing so. What then is this rare designation, and how does it improve both patient outcomes and nursing quality? Ultimately, does the designation provide benefit to those who obtain it?
  • DETOUR OFF THE SEPSIS ROAD EARLY RECOGNITION IS KEY 
    Angela Buckles, RN, CNS-S Murray State University
    At present, the US reports approximately 750,000 cases of sepsis a year and estimates 1 million cases by 2020 With a mortality rate of 30%, an estimated 250,000 annual deaths, and hospital costs exceeding $16 billion, sepsis has become a burden. It is imperative to increase the awareness and early recognition of sepsis
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