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Brain Injury: Nutrition, Communication, and Elimination

presented by Anne Leclaire, RN, MSN, CRRN

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Disclosure Statement:

Financial: Anne Leclaire receives compensation from MedBridge for this course. There is no financial interest beyond the production of this course.

Non-Financial: Anne Leclaire has no competing non-financial interests or relationships with regard to the content presented in this course.

Satisfactory completion requirements: All disciplines must complete learning assessments to be awarded credit, no minimum score required unless otherwise specified within the course.

MedBridge is committed to accessibility for all of our subscribers. If you are in need of a disability-related accommodation, please contact [email protected]. We will process requests for reasonable accommodation and will provide reasonable accommodations where appropriate, in a prompt and efficient manner.

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Nurses use knowledge of brain anatomy and function to guide patient care and negotiate expected outcomes. Brain injuries can cause catastrophic changes to a person's ability to communicate, swallow, and control their bladder and bowel systems. Each of these areas has a significant effect on a patient's quality of life and ability to live independently. In this course, participants will learn how a nurse addresses deficits in nutrition, communication, and elimination to develop interventions to improve patient outcomes.

Meet Your Instructor

Anne Leclaire, RN, MSN, CRRN

Anne graduated with a Master of Science-Nursing from the University of Phoenix and has worked in the field of rehabilitation nursing for most of her career. She started as a staff nurse in inpatient rehabilitation at Weldon Center for Rehabilitation in Springfield, Massachusetts and then moved to Madison, Wisconsin, at University of Wisconsin Hospitals and…

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

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1. Nutrition and Dysphagia

Dysphagia occurs in a large number of patients with brain injury. This swallowing dysfunction challenges the rehabilitation nurse to ensure that the patient receives adequate caloric and fluid intake. Physical impairments from the brain injury can also affect patients’ abilities to independently feed themselves. This chapter addresses the nurse’s role in the management of dysphagia, transition to oral intake, and the use of adaptive feeding techniques.

2. Communication Deficits

Brain injuries can result in communication deficits as patients may suffer from aphasia or dysarthria. The inability to communicate is devastating to people. This chapter discusses the various communication deficits, strategies that rehabilitation nurses can use to communicate with their patients, and techniques that can be used to promote improved speech.

3. Bladder Management

Brain injuries affect all bodily systems to varying degrees based on the location and extent of the damage. This chapter will discuss the effects on the patient’s ability to void by discussing the neurogenic changes affecting the bladder. The rehabilitation nurse will use this information to develop and implement bladder management strategies.

4. Bowel Management

Brain injuries affect all bodily systems to varying degrees based on the location and extent of the damage. This chapter will discuss the neurogenic changes affecting bowel continence. The rehabilitation nurse will use this information to develop and implement bowel management strategies to promote regular emptying.

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