The nurse is assessing a patient's blood pressure during labor. The patient asks why her blood pressure is measured so frequently. Which of the following should the nurse say?
NOTE: This is a SATA question. You must submit at least 2 correct answers for it!

"Blood pressure changes can be a side effect of the medications you have been given."
"Blood pressure changes may affect the fetus."
"Following the blood pressure changes allows us to track your contractions."

Explanation

• Correct: "Blood pressure changes may affect the fetus." Frequent blood pressure monitoring is needed because changes in blood pressure can affect fetal blood supply.

• Correct: "Following the blood pressure changes allows us to track your contractions." Monitoring of contraction intensity and duration is aided by monitoring of blood pressure to recognize when a patient is having a contraction, even when she may not feel it (if she has an epidural).

• Correct: "Blood pressure changes can be a side effect of the medications you have been given." Many of the medications given in labor affect blood pressure and this should be explained to the patient.

• Incorrect: "Decreased blood pressure indicates that the fetus is experiencing pain." The mother's blood pressure does not indicate whether the fetus is experiencing pain, and this answer would frighten a mother.


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