Understanding the Essentials of Critical Care Nursing

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  • Edition: 3rd
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2017-04-27
  • Publisher: PEARSO
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Supplemental Materials

What is included with this book?


This title is appropriate for all baccalaureate-level courses in critical care and advanced adult or medical surgical nursing, as well as for hospital orientation programs for beginning critical care nurses.

An introduction to critical care that helps nurses deliver safe, effective care that optimizes patients’ outcome

Understanding the Essentials of Critical Care Nursing
provides novice critical care nurses with a firm foundation so that they are able to understand the complexities of care, deliver safe, effective care, and begin their transition to expert nurses. It identifies concepts and techniques that are unique to critical care nursing and focuses on the essentials of providing care to patients with disorders that are commonly seen in critical care settings. Evidence-based practices, safety initiatives, commonly used medications, and leading technologies for providing better care are highlighted throughout the book. The Third Edition includes current recommendations for practice as well as new NCLEX®-style questions and analytical Why/Why Not features that spark critical thinking and test readers’ understanding. By concentrating on the problems that the new critical care nurse is most likely to encounter, the text establishes the groundwork readers need to become increasingly effective nurses capable of offering advanced care. 

Author Biography

Kathleen Ouimet Perrin, PhD, RN, CCRN, is professor emerita and adjunct professor of nursing at Saint Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire, where she has taught critical care nursing, professional nursing, ethics, health assessment and understanding suffering. While teaching at the college, she received the AAUP award for Excellence in Teaching. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, her master’s degree from Boston College, and her PhD from Union Institute and University in Cincinnati, Ohio. She has been a practicing critical care nurse for more than 40 years, and has been a member of the American Association of Critical Care (AACN) Nurses for nearly as long. Kathleen has served on the board of the Southern New Hampshire AACN and is a past president of the chapter. She has been on numerous review panels for the national AACN. She was a member of the board of directors and President of the Epsilon Tau chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International. She has published and presented in the areas of critical care nursing, nursing ethics, nursing history, suffering experienced by patients and health care providers, and conflict among members of the health care team. She has written two other nursing texts: Nursing Concepts: Ethics and Conflict, and Palliative Care Nursing: Caring for Suffering Patients, which won an AJN Book of the Year Award in 2011. 


Carrie Edgerly MacLeod PhD, APRN-BC, currently works as a nurse practitioner in Cardiac Surgery Intensive Care in Massachusetts. She has also worked in critical care settings at major teaching institutions in New Hampshire and New York. She received her bachelor's degree from Saint Anselm College and both her master’s degree and PhD from the William F. Connell School of Nursing, Boston College. She has served as a faculty member at both at Saint Anselm and Boston College where she taught pharmacology, pathophysiology, and critical care nursing. She has published in the areas of patients’ and family caregivers’ experiences after cardiac surgery. Dr. MacLeod has lectured on management of the critically ill client at many symposiums across the United States. She has received both academic and clinical awards for her contributions to critical care nursing and client care. 

Table of Contents


1. What is Critical Care?

2. Care of the Critical Ill Patient

3. Care of the Patient with Respiratory Failure

4. Interpretation and Management of Basic Dysrhythmias

5. Cardiodynamics and Hemodynamic Regulation

6. Care of the Patient Experiencing Shock

7. Care of the Patient Experiencing Heart Failure

8. Care of the Patient Experiencing Acute Coronary Syndrome

9. Care of the Patient Following Traumatic Injury

10. Care of the Patient Experiencing an Intracranial Dysfunction

11. Care of the Patient With a Cerebral or Cerbrovascular Disorder

12. Care of the Critically Ill Patient Experiencing Alcohol Withdrawal and/or Liver Failure

13. Care of the Patient With an Acute Gastrointestinal Bleed or Pancreatitis

14. Care of the Patient with Problems in Glucose Metabolism

15. Care of the Patient with Acute Kidney Injury

16. Care of the Organ Donor and Transplant Recipient

17. Care of the Acutely Ill Burn Patient

18. Care of the Patient with Sepsis

19. Care of the ICU Patient at the End of Life

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