Aspiration pneumonia: Best practice to avoid complications

Title: Aspiration pneumonia: Best practice to avoid complications


Aspiration pneumonia is a lung infection due to inhaled contents; this is a relevant topic because aspiration pneumonia is prevalent and accounts for up to 15% of all pneumonia cases and is particularly common in older people, and thus it is important for nurses to be aware of how to manage the condition particularly as the population is ageing so this will be of more concern (Kwong, Howden & Charles 2011).

Target Audience

The target audience for this presentation is experienced Registered Nurses and thus the presentation has been designed for this group.

Main Findings

Aspiration pneumonia is an infection within the lungs that occurs after a person aspirates either liquid, vomit or food into the larynx and lower respiratory tract; this can occur when an individual inhales their gastric or oral contents. Patients at risk include individuals who are elderly or those who have a marked disturbance of consciousness such as that resulting from a drug overdose, seizures, a massive cerebrospinal accident, dysphagia or dysphasia (Kwong, Howden & Charles 2011). Aspiration pneumonia can quickly develop into respiratory failure, abscess and empyema and this requires supportive care, which is the main form of therapy, however prophylactic antimicrobial therapy is also often prescribed (Joundi, Wong & Leis 2015). Best practice suggests suctioning, supplemental oxygen to keep O2 above 90%, septic shock therapy, management of hypotension and antibiotic therapy for 7-10 days. Sputum cultures should be taken so that antibiotics can be tailored appropriately (McAdams-Jones & Sundar 2012).

Implications for Practice

These findings are important for registered nurses to be aware of so that aspiration pneumonia can be managed appropriately and complications can be avoided, which could cause increased hospital stay and costs. Nurses need to be aware of the best practice recommendations such as oxygen supplementation, sit up while eating, provide thickened foods and drinks, dental care and about taking sputum cultures when managing aspiration pneumonia so that treatment can be tailored appropriately and recovery can occur quickly.

Feedback from marker (Teacher)

Thank you for your abstract.

You have just managed a pass grade, your work is very basic and you will need to engage with the basic practice literature to ensure you have a comprehensive understanding of this topic in your poster.

I am also unclear on your focus, is this about prevention of aspiration or management once it has occurred or both?

Kind regards Andrea

Sources of Evidence

Joundi, R, Wong, B & Leis, J 2015, “Antibiotics “Just-In-Case” in a Patient With Aspiration Pneumonitis”, JAMA Internal Medicine, vol. 175, no. 4, p. 489.

Kwong, J, Howden, B & Charles, P 2011, “New aspirations: the debate on aspiration pneumonia treatment guidelines”, The Medical Journal of Australia, vol. 195, no. 7, pp. 380-381.

McAdams-Jones, D & Sundar, K 2012, “Jump into action against aspiration pneumonia”, American Nurse Today, vol. 7, no. 6.

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__MACOSX/Sujan Poster/._Poster Abstract – Aspiration pneumonia (1).docx
__MACOSX/Sujan Poster/._Poster Example (1).pdf
__MACOSX/Sujan Poster/._Poster FAQ.pdf
Sujan Poster/poster_presentation.html

Helpful Hints for the Poster Presentation

This assessment builds of the foundation you established in your poster abstract, but you now need to extend and incorporate the pathophysiology and pharmacology of your chosen topic. You may source some of this information from textbooks.
You are required to provide your poster via MyLO assignment folder prior to or on the due date (please see your unit outline for details).
You must be available during week 7, 8 or 9 to present your poster.
The target audience for your poster presentation is experienced Registered Nurse.
You are encouraged to refer to the poster rubric when you are planning your poster content, design, and prior to final submission.
At the presentation, you are expected to be organised, well-informed about your topic and provide articulate responses.
Your grade and feedback will be available on MyLO when all presentations have been marked and moderated.
You must appropriately acknowledge all sources of information, including images.
To produce an effective poster you require nothing more complex than Microsoft Office programs or similar (Word or Power Point). If you do not have either of these available on computer then there are very good ‘freeware’ programs available, such as Open Office.
Please read the FAQ sheet for further information
This is an example of layout (Thank you to Sonya for sharing her work). Please be mindful that the criteria for this assessment has changed since this poster was undertaken.
Useful Readings
Lawson, G 2005, The poster presentation: An exercise in effective communication, Journal of Vascular Nursing, vol. 23, no. 4, pp. 157-158
Take care to choose illustrations well – to enhance rather than distract from your poster. Some useful guidelines to ‘Design and present posters for maximum impact’ are available on the PHCRIS website
Planning and Evaluation Wizard has some examples of posters and some suggestions for you to consider

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