Comparison impact of sensory excitation performed by family members and nurses on the level of consciousness in patients who are admitted to Intensive Care Unit

Document Type : Original Quantitative and Qualitative Research Paper


1 Postgraduate student, Master of critical nursing Sciences, Department of Nursing, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Lorestan University of medical sciences, Lorestan, Iran

2 Assistant Professor in Nursing Management, Department of Nursing, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Lorestan University of medical sciences, Lorestan, Iran

3 Assistant Professor in Nursing Management, Department of Nursing, University of Welfare and Rehabilitation Sciences, Tehran, Iran

4 MS in Biostatistics, Department of Hygiene, Lorestan University of medical sciences, Lorestan, Iran


Background: Appropriate sensory excitation can improve brain synaptic contact and establish consciousness.
Aim: The aim of this study was to investigate the sensory excitation delivered by family members and nurses on the level of consciousness in patients who are admitted to ICU.
Method: In this clinical trial, 69 patients admitted to ICU in Ashair and Shafa Hospital, Khorammabad, were randomly assigned into two interventions and one control group. The first intervention group received sensory excitation by family members, and the second intervention group by the nurses. Control group were not received any intervention. Intervention was applied two hours a day at 4-5 pm and 8-9 pm to the intervention groups for six days. For all subjects in these three groups, the level of consciousness was measured twice at 5 minutes before and 30 minutes after intervention by the research assistant using Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS). The data were analyzed by SPSS software version 18 using repeated measures and ANOVA tests.
Results: A significant discrepancy was observed between experimental groups in average increasing in GCS before and after intervention based on covariance analysis test results (P<0.001). In addition, the first intervention groups showed the higher increase in GCS score (0.388±0.032 units) and the second intervention the moderate increase (0.268±0.032 units). The lowest increase was found in control group (0.44±0.032 units).
Conclusion: Sensory excitation performed by family members is more effective to improve the level of consciousness of coma patients than the nurses, thus it is suggested to provide conditions in which the nearest family members can do the sensitive excitation program for patients hospitalized in ICU ward subject to receiving adequate training.


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