empyema nursing care plan

empyema nursing care plan


A nursing care plan for a patient with empyema involves addressing both the medical and nursing aspects of care. Empyema is a condition where pus accumulates in the pleural space, usually as a result of a bacterial infection. Here’s a sample nursing care plan:

Patient Diagnosis: Empyema


Physical Assessment:

Monitor vital signs regularly, especially temperature, respiratory rate, and heart rate. Assess lung sounds for changes, such as decreased breath sounds or crackles. Note any signs of respiratory distress, like increased work of breathing.

Psychosocial Assessment:

Evaluate the patient’s emotional state and provide psychological support. Assess the patient’s understanding of the disease, its progression, and treatment plan.

Diagnosis: Impaired Gas Exchange related to decreased lung expansion and pleural effusion.


Short-term Goals:

Improve gas exchange by maintaining oxygen saturation within the target range. Relieve pain and discomfort associated with breathing.

Long-term Goals:

Promote optimal lung function and prevent complications. Enhance the patient’s understanding of the disease and its management.


Respiratory Management:

Administer supplemental oxygen as prescribed to maintain oxygen saturation. Assist with respiratory treatments, such as incentive spirometry, deep breathing exercises, and coughing techniques.

Pain Management:

Administer pain medications as prescribed and assess their effectiveness regularly. Encourage the use of relaxation techniques to alleviate tension and discomfort.


Encourage the patient to change positions regularly to promote drainage of pleural fluid. Assist with positioning for maximum lung expansion, such as semi-Fowler’s position.

Hygiene and Skin Care:

Monitor for signs of infection, especially at the site of any surgical incision or drainage. Promote good personal hygiene to prevent secondary infections.


Provide thorough education on the disease process, treatment plan, and potential complications. Ensure the patient understands the importance of completing the prescribed antibiotic regimen.


Monitor Patient Response:

Assess changes in vital signs and respiratory status. Evaluate the effectiveness of pain management interventions.

Patient Education:

Check the patient’s understanding of the disease and its management. Address any questions or concerns the patient may have.

Collaboration with Healthcare Team:

Communicate regularly with the healthcare team to ensure a coordinated approach to care. Participate in the ongoing assessment and adjustment of the care plan based on the patient’s progress. Regular reassessment of the patient’s condition and adjustment of the care plan based on their response to treatment are crucial in providing effective care for a patient with empyema.


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