A patient with COPD is feeling short of breath and has an oxygen saturation of 86% on room air. The nurse auscultates the patient's lungs and hears inspiratory and expiratory wheezes. The nurse applies a nasal cannula at a rate of 4L. What should the nurse do next?

Administer a prescribed nebulizer treatment


•The patient's situation needs to be addressed immediately. Since the nurse has already administered oxygen, the next action would be to administer a prescribed bronchodilator to open the airway.

•The physician does not need to be informed of the situation immediately. If a bronchodilator has not been prescribed, the nurse should obtain an order from the physician.

•Although the nurse should stay with the patient to provide support, more action is needed to improve the patient's status.

•Intubation with an endotracheal tube is not necessary in this situation.

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