COLD COMPRESS

COLD COMPRESS (Cold Application) – Definition, Purpose, General Instructions, Preliminary Assessment Check, Effects, Physiologic Effects, Indications, Preparation of the Patient and Environment, Equipment, Procedure, After Care and Contraindications

Cold compress is a local moist cold moist application made out of folded layers of gauze, lint piece or old soften linen, wring out of cold or ice water or in some evaporating lotion.

DEFINITION

A cloth wrung from cold or ice water which may be applied to any part of the body.

PURPOSE

  • To provide comfort
  • To reduce body temperature
  • To reduce inflammation and edema
  • To relieve pain, burning sensation and irritation
  • To anesthetize for short time
  • To control hemorrhage
  • To inhibit bacterial growth and thus prevent suppuration

GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS

  • Application of cold compress over the skin helps in conduction of heat
  • Cold application beyond 20 minutes leads to secondary effects
  • Check the temperature every 15 minutes, it helps in detection of any variations in the body temperature

PRELIMINARY ASSESSMENT CHECK

  • The doctor order for any specific instruction
  • General condition and diagnosis of the patient
  • Self-care ability of the patient
  • Assess for the need of cold applications
  • Frequency and duration of application
  • For any contraindication of cold application
  • Articles available in the unit

EFFECTS

To prevent the depression that often occurs following heating treatments. The most effective form of cold compress is a small towel wrapped around the head like a turban during the treatment. The same receptors, or special nerve endings, which serve to convey stimuli to the blood vessels and nerve endings, hence to all the organs reflex connected with them, are affected as much by cold applications as by hot. The more intense is the stimulation, the greater the reaction.

PHYSIOLOGIC EFFECTS

  • To decrease blood  flow locally and distally
  • To prevent and relieve congestion
  • For relief of pain due to edema and/or trauma
  • If applied over the heart: will slow the heart rate, increase the force and raise the arterial blood pressure
  • To increase the reflect effect of thermal applications by increasing the difference between hot and cold; an example is using the cold compress following a fomentation.

INDICATIONS

  • Throbbing pain due to edema or trauma, such as sprains
  • Fevers
  • Congestion in the face and head-sinusitis and head-ache (use with a hot foot bath)
  • As a precordial compress in tachycardia-fast heartbeat (more than 100 beats/min)
  • May be applied as a turban to the head or cravat to the neck with general applications of heat
  • Headache-apply cold compress to head while using a hot foot bath
  • Passive chest congestion in lung problems, together with fomentations

PREPARATION OF THE PATIENT AND ENVIRONMENT

  • Explain the procedure to the patients
  • Arrange the articles at the bedside
  • Provide privacy
  • Place the patient in a comfortable position
  • Bring the patient to the edge of the bed
  • Place the Mackintosh and towel under the patient to protect the bed

EQUIPMENT

A clean tray containing:

  • Bowel with ice water
  • Folded gauze pieces in a bowl
  • Mackintosh and towel
  • Small cotton balls in a bowl
  • Thermometer tray

PROCEDURE

  • Wash hands
  • Pack the ear with cotton balls if compress is to be applied to forehead
  • Take the gauze pieces immerse it in the water wring it
  • Make sure that there is not dripping of water and apply it to the part ordered
  • Change it as soon as it becomes warm
  • Check the temperature every 15 minutes
  • Keep a constant watch on the color of the skin. Test the skin for numbness

AFTER CARE

  • When the time is over, remove the compress
  • Wipe the part and make the patient comfortable
  • Take out the cotton balls from the ears
  • Inspect the part for discoloration or numbness
  • Place the patient in a comfortable position
  • Check the vital signs end of the treatment
  • Replace the articles after cleaning
  • Wash hands
  • Record the procedure in nurse’s record sheet
  • Record the vital signs in TPR sheet

CONTRAINDICATIONS

  • Diabetes use with caution
  • Local skin inflammation
  • Patients who cannot tolerate cold
  • Patient who is chilled – wait until the entire body is warm

COLD APPLICATION

COLD PACK

ICE CAP / ICE COLLAR

TEPID SPONGE / COLD SPONGE

COLD COMPRESS (Cold Application) – Definition, Purpose, General Instructions, Preliminary Assessment Check, Effects, Physiologic Effects, Indications, Preparation of the Patient and Environment, Equipment, Procedure, After Care and Contraindications
COLD COMPRESS (Cold Application) – Definition, Purpose, General Instructions, Preliminary Assessment Check, Effects, Physiologic Effects, Indications, Preparation of the Patient and Environment, Equipment, Procedure, After Care and Contraindications

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