Intensive Care Unit Related Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

1932 Words Mar 31st, 2015 8 Pages
Intensive Care Unit Related Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: Patients, Families, and Prevention
Millions of individuals worldwide are admitted to an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) yearly after a traumatic, life threatening event. Family members keep a vigilant watch over their loved ones during their most vulnerable periods such as being restrained, sedated, and mechanically ventilated, resulting in anxiety for the family during the critical times of hospitalization and for the patient after discharge because they have no recollection of what occurred during these stressful moments. The majority of the patients admitted to the ICU are very appreciative of the medical staff for assisting them in their journey through the unpredictable days battling amongst life and death; however, what comes in the months thereafter can change the patients outlook on the entire situation. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a punishing anxiety disorder in which the individual has vivid reminiscences of the event, cautiously avoids anything that reminds him/her of the incident, and continuous alertness to their surroundings. Acute PTSD typically presents symptoms for three months after the distressing experience occurs but in rare cases symptoms can begin past six months after the occurrence (Khitab, Reid, Bennett, Adams, & Balbuena, 2013).
Impact of the Issue
Patients and family members face the critical moments of the ICU together which can take a toll on everyone involved. Although the…

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