Which assessment finding would indicate that a patient's ascites is improving?

Abdominal girth decreases
Patient reports easier breathing
The amount of ankle edema is now 1+ pitting and 12 hours ago was reported as 3+ pitting
Urine output increases

Explanation

• Increased urine output indicates that the ascitic fluid is being absorbed into the circulation and then excreted.

• Peripheral edema should decrease as ascites resolves.

• Ascites, the accumulation of fluid in the peritoneal cavity, increases abdominal girth and can also inhibit the movement of the diaphragm, resulting in difficulty breathing. As it resolves, breathing eases.

• Abdominal skin should become less shiny.

• Lower fluid volume should cause the pulse rate to slow, not to increase.

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