Clinical Care Needs of Patients with Severe Traumatic Brain Injury in the Intensive Care Unit




Background: Patients with severe traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) need specific clinical care in various dimensions. Therefore, identifying clinical care needs of patients is a key factor to provide nursing care. In this regard, a nurse, as a key member of healthcare team, has the ideal position to identify and meet clinical care needs of patients due to the frequent and close contact with patients. Objectives: The current study aimed at exploring the clinical care needs of patients with severe TBI during the stay in the intensive care unit (ICU), based on the nurses’ perspectives. Methods: The current qualitative study was conducted from November 2015 to March 2016 using the purposive sampling method and semi-structured, in-depth interview with 14 ICU nurses. The interviews were recorded and analyzed using the conventional content analysis method. Results: Data analysis revealed 3 main themes and 6 categories. Physical health maintenance and promotion theme with 2 categories of "neurophysiological care needs" and "preventive care needs", maintaining psychosocial integrity theme with 2 categories of "communication needs" and "appropriate therapeutic environment" and spiritual management theme with 2 categories of "maintaining patients’ dignity" and "providing spiritual care to patients". Conclusions: According to the results, patients with severe TBI had several care needs in physical, psychosocial, and spiritual dimensions. Therefore, healthcare teams should identify and meet such needs to improve the health and welfare of this group of patients.