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COPD Care Plan

COPD careplan

NOTE: every school an every instructor will have a specific way that they want a care plan written, please use this as a guide to help.

COPD – Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease : COPD is a destructive, irreversible condition where air passages are obstructed due to chronic bronchitis, emphysema, bronchiectasis & asthma.

Asthma: Also known as chronic reactive airway disease, asthma is characterized by reversible inflammation and constriction of bronchial smooth muscle, hypersecretion of mucus, and edema. Precipitating factors include allergens, emotional upheaval, cold weather, exercise, chemicals, medications, and viral infections.

Chronic bronchitis: Widespread inflammation of airways with narrowing or blocking of airways, increased production of mucoid sputum, and marked cyanosis.

Emphysema: Most severe form of COPD, characterized by recurrent inflammation that damages and eventually destroys alveolar walls to create large blebs or bullae (air spaces) and collapsed bronchioles on expiration (air-trapping).


1. Ineffective breathing/airway clearance

Potential for complications, s/sx related to dx of COPD, asthma


Will have respiratory rate within normal limits, be free of s/sx of respiratory distress, and maintain optimal functioning within limitations imposed by disease process.


Activities: Encourage mobility, exercise groups. Notify nursing if resident becomes short of breath during activities.


Administer bronchodilators, aerosol treatments, nebulizer, O2 as ordered and monitor for effectiveness, side effects.


Administer medications as ordered and monitor for side effects, effectiveness.


Administer oxygen as ordered by MD. Observe facility protocol for administration of O2, care of resident and changing tubing, etc.


Assess/record/report to MD prn: • Anxiety • Restlessness • Shortness of breath • Wheezing • Dyspnea • Respirations rapid or shallow • Cough • Cyanosis • Confusion • Altered mental status • Fatigue • Headache


Encourage activities that promote exercise, physical activity within tolerance.


Encourage coughing, deep breathing.


Encourage fluid intake, unless contraindicated for other reasons.


Monitor vital signs as ordered. Listen for breath sounds, document respiratory rate, rhythm, depth, and any abnormal breath sounds.


Obtain and monitor lab/ diagnostic work as ordered. Report results to MD and follow up as indicated.


Obtain and monitor lab/ diagnostic work as ordered. Report results to MD and follow up as indicated.


Oral suctioning as needed per physician orders.


Resident education: • Disease process • Medication effects • Need for rest and exercise • Smoking cessation (if applicable)



Anna C. RN-BC, BSN, PHN, CMSRN Anna began writing extra materials to help her BSN and LVN students with their studies. She takes the topics that the students are learning and expands on them to try to help with their understanding of the nursing process. She is a clinical instructor for LVN and BSN students along with a critical care transport nurse.

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