The influence of patient complexity and nurses' experience on haemodynamic decision-making following cardiac surgery

Judy Currey, Mari Botti
Intensive & Critical Care Nursing: the Official Journal of the British Association of Critical Care Nurses 2006, 22 (4): 194-205
Critical care nurses' haemodynamic decision-making in the immediate postoperative cardiac surgical context is complex. To optimise patient outcomes, nurses of varying levels of experience are required to make complex decisions rapidly and accurately. In a dynamic clinical context such as critical care, the quality of such decision-making is likely to vary considerably. The aim of this study was to describe variability of nurses' haemodynamic decision-making in the 2-hour period after cardiac surgery as a function of interplay between decision complexity, nurses' levels of experience, and the support provided. A descriptive study based on naturalistic decision-making was used. Data were collected using continuous non-participant observation of clinical practice for a 2-hour period and follow-up interview. Purposive sampling was used to recruit 38 nurses for inclusion in the study. The quality of nurses' decision-making was influenced by interplay between the complexity of patients' haemodynamic presentations, nurses' levels of cardiac surgical intensive care experience, and the form of decision support provided by nursing colleagues. Two factors specifically influenced decision-making quality: nurses' utilisation of evidence for practice and the experience levels of both nurses and their colleagues. The findings have implications for staff resourcing decisions and postoperative patient management, and may be used to inform nurses' professional development and education.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"