Published: 22 December, 2016 | Volume 1 - Issue 1 | Pages: 005-013
Background: Intensive care patients are often in need of sedation to endure being intubated. Light sedation is increasingly common since it has been proved to offer benefits such as faster recovery to patients.
Aim: The aim of this study was to describe critical care nurses’ experiences of nursing patients lightly sedated with dexmedetomidine.
Research Methodology: Qualitative personal interviews were conducted during 2015 with 10 critical care nurses in Sweden. Interview transcripts were analysed using inductive qualitative thematic analysis.
Results: Light sedation of the patient facilitated communication and interaction with him or her, and the relationship between the patient and his or her family members. Dexmedetomidine was described as a fairly new drug, and the critical care nurses stated that they needed more knowledge about it and about sedation scales in order to learn more about the drug’s mechanism of action and its potential side effects on patients.
Conclusion: It is important to critical care nurses to learn more about dexmedetomidine and about sedation scales to assess levels of sedation, as light sedation has been shown to benefit the patient as opposed to deep sedation that can increase recovery time.
Critical care nurses; Experiences; Intensive care; Qualitative content analysis; Sedation