Critical Thinking


Critical Thinking

Threaded Discussion

Jovelyn Bicera

Azusa Pacific University

BRNS 271 Theories and Concepts in Professional Nursing

Professor Catherine Mc Phee

October 12, 2011


      According to Kearney-Nunnery (2008), “critical thinking is viewed as engaging in purposeful cognitive activity directed toward establishing a belief or map of action” (p. 159). Critical thinking requires that we use a systematic and logical process to address the challenges we face during patient care delivery. Critical thinking requires us to continually question our beliefs. Critical thinking necessitates that we take the opportunity to reflect on our reasoning processes.

      Working in a stroke unit, it is empirical for each nurse to use critical thinking skills in assessing patients for any changes in condition, prioritize and anticipate orders, and able to perform individual nursing interventions. I would like to share a situation when my critical thinking helped save a patient. She is an 80-year-old female who was admitted in the unit to rule-out (r/o) stroke. Patient presented in emergency room with complain of numbness on the left arm and altered level of consciousness. Cat scan (CT) of brain was negative for acute hemorrhage or infarct. Hypertension, diabetes, and seizures were the only medical history noted. Upon admission to unit, patient was awake, alert and verbally responsive with no reports of any numbness. Aside from weakness on lower legs, patient was back to normal state. On day three of admission, patient was having physical therapy as part of stroke protocol. Patient returned to her room after the treatment when I noticed that she started jerking with deviation on her left side. Charge nurse was called in and she was insisting that patient is having a seizure episode. But I told her that the symptoms presented could also be stroke. Vital signs were normal except blood pressure...