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Community Care (NRSG 2220) Module 1 Part A- General Survey And Pain Assessment

John Marsh
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Northeastern University

Nursing Interventions Assessment And Community Care (NRSG 2220)

Module 1 Part A- General Survey and Pain Assessment

NRSG 2220
Module 1 Part A: General Survey and Pain Assessment
Sept 03
Getting Started: General Survey and Pain Assessment
General Survey:
Looking at a patient through the eyes of a professional nurse.
● Provides clues to overall health
● Begins the moment of contact
● First impressions
● Challenge your observational skills
● Usually includes vital signs, height and weight.
What to observe for:
● Signs of distress
● Stature, build
● Dressing and grooming
● Posture, gait, coordination
● Eye contact
○ Can they make eye contact with you?
● Level of consciousness, mood
● Speech patterns
○ Tells you about developmental level, ethnicity, or even level of education
● Vision or hearing problems
● Nutritional state
○ Good thing to look at is hair, healthy hair indicates good protein stores in their
● Significant others accompanying patient
Picture of Child
● What do you see?
○ Nutritional Status→ Chubby, typical of healthy toddler
○ Musculoskeletal development→ The child is starting to walk and hold onto things.
Holding on to things is indicative of mental status (holding on for safety)
○ Respiratory→ Color is good, no trouble breathing
○ Environment → Clothing is appropriate and clean, she seems to be content and room
seems to be clean and hazard free.
Pain Assessment
Pain in general is considered the 5th vital sign
The Pain Experience
● Pain is a subjective experience. You cannot experience the pain the patient is
○ Highly individual
○ Ethnocultural considerations
● Expression of pain may not be consistent with degree of pain.



Community Care (NRSG 2220) Module 1 Part A- General Survey And Pain Assessment

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