Reflect on a pediatric patient who presented with an eye, ear, nose, or throat disorder during your Practicum experience. Describe your experience in assessing and managing the patient and his or her family. Include details of your “aha” moment in identifying the patient’s disorder and explain how the experience connected your classroom studies to the real-world clinical setting.

Assignment: practicum – journal entry

My Practicum experience involved working with a child who was suffering from an upper respiratory infection (URI). This caused sore throats and congestion. As this was my first experience with pediatric patients, I felt a little nervous.

When the family arrived they were already in distress due to the child’s condition, indicating that this wasn’t their first run-in with URI’s. I discussed their history and performed a physical exam. The child had swollen tonsils, inflammation, and other signs that indicated bacterial pharyngitis. As we examined her further, we could also hear rales in both lungs indicating pneumonia; however we couldn’t get an accurate assessment without proper diagnostic tools such as chest x-ray or sputum cultures.

My classroom knowledge about URI management combined with my assessment findings led me to believe that antibiotics can most likely cure her infection in days. It is faster than traditional care methods such as steam inhalation and rest.

At this point came my “aha” moment when realized how different textbook scenarios were compared to actual clinical settings where there are often numerous variables beyond our control like insufficient supplies or limited staff capabilities that can complicate outcomes even further. This realization led to me realizing that being able adjust treatment plans quickly is critical in order to minimize potential harm and optimize health outcomes, regardless of the situation. All in all working alongside this young patients family allowed me gain invaluable insight into caring for children while helping them find relief from discomfort caused by illnesses like URI’s , something no amount reading papers or lectures can truly prepare anyone for.

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