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The Utilization and Application of Restraints in Non-psychiatric Patients

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The uses of physical restraints for medical purposes are valued in the patient safety and ethics by performance of evidence of best practice. According to Craven a singular definition of a restraint “any manual method, physical, or mechanical device, material, or equipment that immobilizes or reduces the ability of a patient to move his or her arms, legs, body, or head freely” (2013). By this definition we can also rule out that orthopedic devices, dressings or bandages, or any other equipment used in the patients physical examinations or tests to protect the patient are not considered restraints (Craven, Hirnle, & Jensen, 2013). The most common circumstances to use medical restraints take place in intensive care units (ICU) where…show more content…
I feel that restraints should be used as a last resort and for minimal time possible due to the emotions the patients feel and what it puts them through. Most importantly, the implications of restraints can cause patients to experience loss of muscle strength, pressure ulcers, and strangulations to name a few (Demir, 2007). Through evidence based practice literature, it is becoming crucially important that nurses and other health care professionals utilize physical restraints in a safe and ethical manner. When restraints need to be utilized, they must be for temporary use until the patient is coherent or until the IV or tubes get discontinued. In a study done on ICU patients around Europe Julie Benbenbishty, Shelia Adam and Ruth Endacott examined the reasons, timing, type of restraints and availability of policies used (2010). With a sample of thirty four ICUs in nine different countries, researchers found that 33% of the patients were restrained under the circumstances of being ventilated, sedated, in larger units and in hospitals where the nurse to patient ratio was decreased (Benbenbishty et al., 2010). The primary reasoning for restraining patients was pulling on tubing and lines with the possible case of self extubation (Benbenbishty et al., 2010.). In hospitals and especially
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