The nurse is caring for a primigravida complaining of lightheadedness, faintness, cold clammy skin, and palpitations after lying supine. The appropriate nursing intervention i


• Supine hypotension syndrome can be corrected easily by having the woman turn onto her side (preferably the left side) to enhance blood flow through the vena cava. To increase the collateral blood circulation during pregnancy, teach the patient to rest on her left side rather than her back.

• When a pregnant woman lies supine, the weight of the growing fetus compresses the vena cava against the vertebrae, obstructing blood flow from the lower extremities. This causes a decrease in blood return to the heart and decreases cardiac output, causing hypotension.

• Incorrect: Ambulation cannot relieve supine hypotension syndrome; however, it can stimulate circulation.

• Incorrect: Laying on her back with her head elevated will not correct this.

• Incorrect: While this is not uncommon, it should be corrected because it represents impaired blood flow due to a less than ideal position.

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