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The theory of unpleasant symptoms is consequential in-patient assessment and remains valuable to nursing. Out of the many tenets of nursing care, a comprehensive review of symptoms is important, as nurses are deeply involved in evaluating or quantifying them, assessing what alleviates or aggravates them, and monitoring them for patient progress. Thus, the theory of unpleasant symptoms, which has three main sections, was advanced to shed light on the features of symptoms and facilitate nursing practice (Lenz, 2018). According to the theory, the presentation of a symptom results from the reciprocal influence of the proceeding psychological, situational, and physiological factors (Blakeman, 2019; Gomes et al., 2019). The theory further explains how multifaceted and interrelated symptoms are and focuses on how this relationship affects the ultimate performance of the patient. As established, the review of presenting symptoms and knowledge of the parameters that cover their subsequent management is important in the delivery of nursing care. Hence, the theory of unpleasant symptoms is crucial in patient assessment, especially in nursing. This article aims to use it as a blueprint in explaining what an ideal or effective assessment tool should look like.
An effective assessment tool should consistently apply information from the theory. Drawing from the first part of the theory (symptom), an assessment tool should comprehensively survey the severity of the presenting symptom (Lenz, 2018). Along the same lines, the tool should also go to the lengths of evaluating the timeliness and specific attributes of the symptom in relation to the level of the affliction of the patient. Ultimately in this section, the tool should assess for other symptoms which may not be related to the condition whose impression has been made. In line with the second section of the theory (influencing factors), an assessment tool should holistically survey for any situational, environmental, psychological, and physiological factors influencing the occurrence of the presenting symptoms (Lenz, 2018). This should be done regularly and progressively to alleviate the effects of these factors and monitor for changes in the patient’s condition. Lastly, in the performance outcomes section, the assessment tool should evaluate how well a patient can function on parameters such as daily activities. The incorporation of all this would ensure that the assessment tool is effective.
To conclude, symptoms are indeed one of the cores of nursing care. The theory of unpleasant symptoms is important as it facilitates a better understanding of the intricacies of symptoms. The theory contains the following sections: Symptom, Influencing Factors, and Outcome of performance. These can be used to build an assessment tool in nursing that is not only comprehensive but also effective. Hence, the theory of unpleasant symptoms is crucial to nursing care.
Health care providers tend to play a significant role in analyzing the symptoms which are experienced by the patient. Therefore, nurses should focus on examining patients’ symptoms in order for the best medical intervention to be applied. When the symptoms are evaluated, nurses are able to assess various factors that result in the development of such symptoms, thus establishing devise management as well as prevention strategies in dealing with symptoms (Mikšić et al., 2019). Besides, nurses help their clients in with self-management based on the symptoms indicated hence being able to conduct ongoing monitoring. One vital approach to assist nurses in assessing the patient systems is the Theory of unpleasant symptoms. This approach is significant since it identifies crucial characteristics of the symptoms. As a result, these guide the nursing practice as well as research. In addition, the theory of unpleasant symptoms tends to provide details regarding the nurse’s interest in an assessment tool while assessing patient symptoms (Kalantar-Zadeh et al., 2022).
There are several aspects which nursing practitioners focus on when searching for the tool to assess the patient’s symptoms. For instance, the patient’s self-reported symptoms should be contained as it is explained in the assessment tool. After this, the nurse derives the effects of the illness, thus the most favorable treatment for self-reported symptoms. Furthermore, the assessment tool which the nursing practitioner selects should determine various factors which influence the symptoms reported by the patient. This theory also focuses on the patient’s symptoms, thus defining them subjectively as the patients have reported them. Another aspect which is vital to evaluate the tool to assess the patient’s symptoms is the ability to evaluate factors influencing certain symptoms due to gender, variables allied to the health conditions, and age (Blakeman, 2019). These factors might affect the patient’s perception of the symptoms.
Also, the theory considers the physical and social environment outside the patient, which may affect the reported symptoms. As a result, the assessment tools need to address child development, growth, physiology, and situational issues, among others. All these issues are essential since they allow the nurse to have a better comprehension of the patient’s condition. Therefore, the Theory of unpleasant symptoms helps the health care provider select the best assessment tool to examine the patient’s symptoms for the establishment of a treatment care plan to be provided (Seo, Ryu & Ham, 2018). Nevertheless, the assessment tool selected should describe key elements such as the identity of the patient’s symptoms, factors that influence the symptoms, and the performance outcome.