Impact of early mobilization protocol on the medical-surgical inpatient population

An integrated review of literature

Lavanya Pashikanti, Diane Von Ah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

60 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose/Objectives: The purpose of this review article was to examine the efficacy of an early mobilization protocol in hospitalized medical-surgical inpatient population. Background/Rationale: Prolonged immobilization can result in functional decline and heighten the risk for hospital-associated complications such as falls and pressure ulcers. Early mobilization, on the other hand, has been shown to prevent functional decline and hospital-associated complications. However, currently no evidence-based guidelines exist with regard to an early mobilization protocol for the medical-surgical inpatient population. Therefore, the purpose of this review was to provide a thorough analysis of current evidence pertaining to an early mobilization protocol for the medical-surgical inpatient population. Methods: A comprehensive search of the literature was conducted using Ovid, MEDLINE, and PubMed databases using the following search terms: early ambulation, postoperative care, and length of stay. Outcome: We found a total of 9 empirical studies that met the inclusion criteria. Studies revealed that using the basic tenets of an early mobilization protocol was associated with improved outcomes for patients with deep vein thrombosis, reduced length of stay in patients with community-acquired pneumonia, and maintained or improved functional status from admission to discharge of hospitalized older adults and patients recovering from major surgery. Interpretation/Conclusion: Overall, our review found that early mobilization (especially early ambulation) of the medical-surgical inpatient population may improve patient outcomes. Implications: Our review indicated that the greatest impact of early mobilization is through standardized mobility protocols or programs. Clinical nurse specialists are experts in leading and sustaining standardized protocols or programs pertaining to a nurse-sensitive outcome such as mobility.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)87-94
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Nurse Specialist
Volume26
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2012

Fingerprint

Early Ambulation
Inpatients
Population
Length of Stay
Nurse Clinicians
Postoperative Care
Pressure Ulcer
PubMed
MEDLINE
Venous Thrombosis
Immobilization
Pneumonia
Nurses
Databases
Guidelines

Keywords

  • early mobilization
  • medical-surgical patients
  • outcomes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing
  • Assessment and Diagnosis
  • Leadership and Management
  • LPN and LVN
  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Impact of early mobilization protocol on the medical-surgical inpatient population : An integrated review of literature. / Pashikanti, Lavanya; Von Ah, Diane.

In: Clinical Nurse Specialist, Vol. 26, No. 2, 03.2012, p. 87-94.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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