Clinical Dilemmas

“Caring practices are central to nursing. What it is to nurse cannot be separated from what it is to care for and about others.”
–Christine A. Tanner, PhD, RN, FAAN

Nursing is both a science and an art. Though empathy is fundamental to holistic nursing practice, this soft skill is not easily taught, nor consistently integrated into curriculum. KeithRN Clinical Dilemma case studies emphasize the importance of the art and ethics of the nursing profession. Each study integrates aspects of caring, engagement, and ethical decision-making and its relevance to modern nursing practice.

Four Categories of Dilemmas

  1. Patient Dilemmas
    How to respond when a patient is anxious, has lost hope, or exhibits possible drug-seeking behavior.
  2. Treatment Dilemmas
    Ways to support a patient who faces the end of life and needs to choose between hospice and aggressive medical management.
  3. Ethical Dilemmas
    What to do when the patient’s family disagrees with code status or exhibits concern of medical futility.
  4. Nurse Dilemmas
    How to address incivility in practice and academia, including student burnout.

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Patient Dilemmas

  • Disrespectful Family Member

Treatment Dilemmas

  • Surgery vs. Palliative care
  • LVAD vs. Hospice

Ethical Dilemmas

  • Remain Intubated or Withdraw Life Support
  • Code Status vs. Patient Autonomy

Nurse Dilemmas

  • Faculty to Student Incivility
  • Nurse to Student Incivility

And many more!