Welcome to Episode 129 of the Nursing Show

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Tip of The Week- Acute Adrenal Crisis Review for Nurses

In the featured tips here on the Nursing Show over the past weeks, we have covered disorders of the adrenal glands Cushing’s syndrome and Addison’s disease. Nursing students will have a follow-up on last week’s tip in this week’s episode on acute adrenal crisis.

Acute adrenal crisis is a life threatening condition which arises from lack of production of cortisol by the adrenal glands. Nurses should be able to recognize the signs of the crisis early so that they can be prepared to initiate the supportive treatments necessary to sustain a patient while the causes are resolved.

Adrenal crisis is different from the chronic conditions associated with Addison’s disease. In contrast with Addison’s disease, acute adrenal crisis does not only arise from damaged adrenal glands but also from other causes like injured pituitary glands, recently discontinued corticosteroid treatments, and untreated adrenal insufficiency.

To better understand acute adrenal crisis, nurses, RNs, LPNs, and student nurses may follow the links below.

NIH Medline Article on Acute Adrenal Crisis

Hormones of the AdrenalCortex

eMedicine on Adrenal Insufficiency and Adrenal Crisis


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Matthew Ebel

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