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When a patient is anxious, could this represent something more than a primary problem of anxiety? In this dilemma, a patient who almost died after surgery is making excellent progress, but something may be wrong. Does his sudden onset of shortness of breath and feelings of anxiety represent a physical, emotional, or a spiritual problem? The nurse needs to think in action and determine the current nursing priority to provide needed care and support.
Clinical Dilemmas are a new series of clinical reasoning case studies that emphasize the “art” of nursing. Each study has an emphasis that integrates aspects of caring, spiritual care, nurse engagement/presence, and ethical decision making and its relevance to nursing practice.
These case studies can be used in the classroom as an active learning tool to develop the ethical comportment of nurses as well as in post-conference in the clinical setting. Students will also develop clinical reasoning as they identify relevant clinical data, determine the nursing priority and resultant nursing interventions.