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HealthStream®: Capnography Monitoring During Opioid Delivery


  • ID295014

  • Online
  • English
  • Accredited

Respiratory depression is a significant complication associated with the use of opioids for the management of pain. Each year, an estimated 12% to 58% of patients receiving patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) experience respiratory depression during therapy. This avoidable adverse event is often unrecognized, especially on the general care floor due to rapidly changing patient condition and the inadequacy of traditional monitoring approaches. According to the Joint Commission, opiates can suppress respiration, heart rate, and blood pressure even at therapeutic doses. Therefore, the need for monitoring is critical. The Joint Commission, as well as other organizations, recommends pulse oximetry and/or capnography monitoring for patients who are receiving patient-controlled analgesia (PCA). Several studies have suggested that using capnography monitoring, in addition to pulse oximetry, can improve care and patient safety. This activity will provide you with the knowledge you will need to successfully implement capnography monitoring of patients receiving opioids and to interpret the information gained through monitoring. Specifically, you will learn about the risks associated with opioid therapy and how capnography monitoring can help to mitigate adverse events. In addition, you will learn how to interpret and respond to changes indicated by capnography.

This program has been approved for 1 contact hours continuing Respiratory Care Education (CRCE) credit by the American Association for Respiratory Care, 9425, N. MacArthur Blvd, Suite 100, Irving TX 75063.

Commercially supported through Grant Funds given by Covidien Respiratory and Monitoring Solutions.


Accreditation refers to educational content only and does not imply AARC, ANCC, CBRN, IABRN, WVERPN, FLBRN or HealthStream endorsement or promotion of any product or service.

Unless cited, the content and conclusion of this course are solely those of the course provider. HealthStream® is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.