Essay The Improper Use of Patient Restraints

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The Improper Use of Patient Restraints Running head: PATIENT RESTRAINT PROTOCOLS Patient restraints have been a hot issue within the past ten to fifteen years in nursing. There have been numerous studies done on the adverse affects restraints have on patients, physiologically and psychologically. Anger, fear, impaired mobility, bladder and bowel incontinence, eating difficulty, skin breakdown, and nosocomial infections have all been associated with the use of restraints (Weeks, 1997; Janelli, 1995). Therefore, there has been a move to limit the use of restraints and develop safer protocols for the times that they are used. All hospitals, today, have restraint protocols that nursing staff should follow when…show more content…
Many of the patients are at risk for falls due to neurological problems. There are at least two to three patients restrained on the unit on a daily basis. Some of the reasons nurses restrain patients are to prevent them from harming themselves or others, to help maintain treatment plans, and to control confused or agitated patients (Stratmann, Vinson, Magee and Hardin, 1997). The most frequently used restraints are vests, wrist, belts/ties, mitten and ankle, in that order (Stratmann et al., 1997). Many research studies currently taking place are focused towards discovering alternatives to restraints. Identifying successful alternatives to restraints and educating nurses about alternatives has helped in reducing the use of restraints (Winston, Morelli, Bramble, Friday and Sanders, 1999; Weeks, 1997). There are times, however, when restraints are needed to protect patients (Richman, 1998; Dibartolo, 1998). Restraints would be indicated for an intubated patient who keeps pulling out his endotracheal tube. In such cases, failing to use restraints could result in a claim or lawsuit being brought on for negligence (Richman, 1998). In 1992, the Food and Drug Administration issued a warning on restraints because of the nearly 300 deaths and injuries related to restraint use occurring each year (Janelli, 1995). Problems identified by the FDA included inappropriate restraint selection, errors in applying devices, and inadequate monitoring of the
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