Date of Award

1-1-1995

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Nursing

Faculty

Faculty of Health and Human Sciences

Abstract

Assessment of peripheral perfusion is one of the most important aspects of care associated with nursing patients receiving intraaortic balloon pump (IABP) therapy. The validity of traditional methods of assessing peripheral perfusion based on colour, warmth, circulatory return, and quality of pedal pulses has' been questioned because of their subjective nature. Consequently, there is a need to identify a reliable quantitative method of monitoring peripheral perfusion in patients with IABPs. Measurement of toe temperatures by use of a skin probe has long been established as a reliable quantitative indicator of the state of lower limb perfusion in critically ill patients other than those with IABPs. To date the use of a skin probe to measure toe temperatures in patients with IABPs has not been described in the literature. This prospective study used a descriptive and correlational design to describe characteristic toe temperatures in bilateral limbs of patients receiving IABP support and to examine the relationship between toe temperatures in the presence and absence of the intraaortic balloon catheter (IABC) and in the presence and absence of ischemic changes in the lower limbs. The relationship between toe temperatures and nurses' conventional assessments of peripheral perfusion was also examined.

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