Which sedation strategy for ICU patients on mechanical ventilation can help mitigate post-intensive care syndrome?
a. Keep the patient heavily sedated.
b. Use the lightest level of sedation possible.
c. Do not awaken the patient during sedation.
d. Awaken the sedated patient every 3 days.
Correct answer: b. To provide optimal ventilator management, the lightest levels of sedation, if any, should be used so patients can communicate and engage in activities. Heavy sedation causes immobility and resulting debilitation. Also, a heavily sedated brain may suffer cognitive or mental-health problems later.
To learn more, read the continuing nursing education article: “Post-intensive care syndrome: What it is and how to help prevent it”.