NURS 6501: Advanced Pathophysiology Week 1 Discussion: Factors That Influence Disease Sample Essay

NURS 6501: Advanced Pathophysiology Week 1 Discussion: Factors That Influence Disease Sample Essay

NURS 6501: Advanced Pathophysiology

Week 1 Discussion

Factors That Influence Disease

Patient Scenario

I work in an emergency department in a rural hospital in West Virginia. It is common to treat numerous patients with complaints of chest pain. Most of the patients that I have encountered tend to be male, overweight, have a medical history that includes hypertension, and have obvious poor diet choices. Per the American Heart Association, heart disease is the number one killer in West Virginia in 2010.

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Behavior and Atherosclerosis

There are multiple lifestyle choices that can affect the health of an individual. Choices such as smoking, poor diet choices, and a sedentary lifestyle can all have detrimental effects on a person’s health. These choices place individuals at higher risk for diabetes, hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, and obesity; all of which contribute to atherosclerosis (WebMD, 2017). Males lack LDL-lowering effect of estrogens, smoking leads to injury of endothelial cells, hypertension increases shear stress resulting in damage to the endothelium, and obesity releases factors that can alter the endothelial function and increase the inflammatory state of an individual (Hammer & McPhee, 2014, p. 309). Although genetics can play a major role, prevention remains key and healthy lifestyles remain priority. NURS 6501: Advanced Pathophysiology Week 1 Discussion: Factors That Influence Disease Sample Essay.

 

Pathophysiology

It is vital to have a clear understanding of the disease process and pathophysiology to diagnose and treat different medical conditions successfully, as many conditions have multiple similarities in their presentation or disease processes can have various presentations (Laureate Education, 2012). Atherosclerosis is a chronic inflammatory disease triggered by lipid retention in the arterial wall causing an inflammatory response in the endothelium (Hammer & McPhee, 2014, p. 306). Macrophages are then stimulated that accumulate with lipids causing a fatty streak causing more inflammation and damage; this leads to plaque formation that eventually obstructs blood flow to distal tissues, especially during exercise or stress (Huether & McCance, 2017). However, many plaques are clinically silent until they rupture initiating the clotting cascade leading to rapid thrombus formation that can occlude the affected vessel causing ischemia and infarction (Huether & McCance, 2017). NURS 6501: Advanced Pathophysiology Week 1 Discussion: Factors That Influence Disease Sample Essay

Atherosclerosis is often silent, as symptoms do not typically occur until there is inadequate perfusion of tissue because of obstruction. It also depends on where the vessel obstruction is located. For example, if the vessel involved is one of the coronary arteries, then chest pain and shortness of breath can be the symptomology. If the vessel involved is the carotid artery, then the patient may present with stroke-like symptoms that may resolve, a transient ischemic event. As previously mentioned, although genetics plays an important role in the development of atherosclerosis, lifestyle changes remain as the primary intervention for prevention of this silent killer.

References

American Heart Association. (2010). West Virginia State Fact Sheet. Retrieved from http://www.heart.org/idc/groups/heart-public/@wcm/@adv/documents/downloadable/ucm_307219.pdf

Hammer, G. D., & McPhee, S. J. (2014). Pathophysiology of disease: An introduction to clinical medicine (7th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Medical.

Huether, S. E., & McCance, K. L. (2017). Understanding pathophysiology (6th ed.). St. Louis, MO: Mosby.

Laureate Education (Producer). (2012). Introduction of advanced pathophysiology. Baltimore, MD: Author

WebMD. (2017). What is atherosclerosis? Retrieved from http://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/what-is-atherosclerosis#1 NURS 6501: Advanced Pathophysiology Week 1 Discussion: Factors That Influence Disease Sample Essay

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