Reposted from @goldstandardems - The 5 Ps of Circulatory Assessments is a tool you can use to remember everything you’re looking for when assessing for neurovascular integrity.
Paralysis - Can they move their limb? Can they squeeze your hand? Can they both dorsiflex and plantarflex their feet? If they can’t, it should be noted.
Parasthesia - Can they feel you touching their hand and feet? Use your finger, a pen prick with the end of a pen, etc. Lack of sensation, “pins and needles” or “falling asleep” is not a normal finding (assuming they weren’t laying on it weird). Any abnormalities should be noted.
Pain - Does the extremity hurt? Does it hurt worse when flexed? Pain should be noted accordingly.
Pulse - Does their extremity have a pulse? Radial and plantar pulses should be assessed and marked. If no pulse is found, it should be noted.
Pallor - Pallor is a good indicator of whether or not an extremity is being perfused. White, ashy, dusky appearances may indicate a poorly perfused limb. Capillary refill should be assessed as well.
When is assessing for neurovascular integrity important? Essentially any time there is a potential for compromise. E.g. trauma to a limb, potential trauma to the spinal cord, potential for developing compartment syndrome, limbs in casts, prolonged immobility, anticoagulation therapies, edema, diabetes, burns, postoperative procedures, etc.
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