Nursing Care of Pediatric Cranioplasty Patients after Traumatic Brain Injury
Hospitals are associated with pain, illness, and death. Patients, as well as families, go through so much pain both emotionally and physically as they seek treatment for their sickness, some of which are life-altering. Children also suffer through this pain and have to be cared for more closely as they do not understand what is happening to them. Traumatic brain injury (TBI), as the name suggests, involves trauma to the head that causes swelling of the brain. When the brain swells, it is necessary to intervene medically to give the brain more space for it to expand. Rachel McCormick delves into the matter of nursing care of pediatric patients after surgical intervention due to TBI. The article makes for an informative and insightful read, both for medical practitioners as well as lay people.
The author begins with an explaining the meanings of the terms what cranioplasty and craniectomy. This is an important starting point as many people do not understand what this means. The background section gives the statistics of pediatric patients that suffered from traumatic brain injury. The accompanying table enables the reader to see the causes of TBI by percentages (McCormick 216). The analysis by table allows the reader to understand the gravity of the matter and understand that the author’s opinion is backed by facts. Logos has been employed in this section by citing facts and figures.
When discussing the importance of craniectomy and cranioplasty, the author’s tone is direct and succinct. She gives details on the measures that are taken to minimize secondary brain injury including “elevating the head of the bed to promote drainage of cerebral spinal fluid, intravenous hypertonic saline or manitol to shift fluid from the intracranial space into the intravascular space, sedation to decrease the oxygen demands of the brain…” (McCormick 215)The author is unbiased and also goes ahead to outline the risks associated with cranioplasties, including that children had a higher success rate as compared to adults. All through the article, the author backs up the information with research that has been carried out previously by other researchers. Such fact-checking ensures that the reader gets an unprejudiced view of the facts relating to pediatric patients with traumatic brain injury. This is an application of ethos where the author convinces the author of her credibility. She goes out of her way to ensure that her information is factual.
The grouping of the paper into sections helps the reader to understand the subject matter without getting mixed up. The author of the article is quite elaborative and gives explanations for each section clearly and directly. While most of the terms used are medical, a layperson reading the report will have an interest in learning the new terminologies and also be curious to learn more about the subject matter. The use of tables and figures breaks the monotony of reading and enables the reader to quickly skim through the statistics and get a sense of the statistics before they finish reading the article. Visual representation piques the reader’s interest even more, and the delivery of the desired information is more straightforward.
The author discusses the care that pediatric patients have to receive in detail and employs pathos to present a more accurate picture. It is evident that traumatic brain injury is a painful and dangerous occurrence that must be dealt with quickly. The surgical interventions are already quite delicate and operating on children makes it even more so. The author gives an example of a 28-year-old patient who had undergone cranioplasty and the significant improvements to her health throughout months (219). This is under the monitoring of benefits in which nurses are tasked with closely monitoring and examining the patients to observe their improvements after a cranioplasty.
On the side of the complications, the author retains her neutral tone. She gives some of the symptoms that are a sign of complications following surgery (McCormick 219). Precautions towards avoiding some of the complications such as hematoma and hydrocephalus. To conclude her article, the author emphasizes the `critical role that nurses have to play in the pediatric care of patients who have undergone cranioplasty. She author says that “Nurses are highly skilled in monitoring benefits and complications in children recovering from cranioplasty in acute care hospitals, rehabilitation settings, and outpatient clinics, and are essential members of the interdisciplinary team.” (McCormick 220)
The article is generally very informative, and the reader is left with far more knowledge of cranioplasties and craniectomies than they had before reading it. The information given about the causes of traumatic brain injury can help those caring for children avoid such occurrences that are preventable. The conclusion of the article is a fitting end to a well-written piece with the author asserting that there still needs to be more research into the subject of both the benefits and complications of a cranioplasty. Research also needs to be done in the area of nursing care. “Comprehensive data on cranioplasty procedures and outcomes can help guide future research.” Even with this conclusion, the publishing of this article is a step in the right direction for the future of research in cranioplasties as well as craniectomies.
McCormick, Rachel. “Nursing Care of Pediatric Cranioplasty Patients after Traumatic Brain Injury: Monitoring Benefits and Complications.” Pediatric Nursing 44.5 (2018): 215-221.