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Organizational Sequence of This Manual

Tabs Across the Life Span

  • Alerts & Alarms

  • Pediatrics

  • Adolescence

  • Adult

  • Pregnancy

  • Geriatric

Within Each Tab

  • Musculoskeletal

  • Neuromuscular

  • Cardiovascular/Pulmonary

  • Integumentary

  • Gastrointestinal

  • Hepatic

  • Endocrine

  • Urogenital

  • Additional information

What is a RED Flag?

Various pathologies are specific to gender, race, genetics, &/or occupation. Age may also place a person at a higher risk for the development of certain pathologies. Thus, this manual is arranged to cover the life span with this concept in mind. The clinician is encouraged to obtain a thorough history, complete a review of systems, clear adjacent structures, & then attempt to provoke the symptoms reported by the client. Failure to influence the symptoms of the client via palpation, motion, or the implementation of special tests should be a red flag for a pathological lesion that may lie outside the scope of the clinician's practice & require referral.

The term red flag is a common term used by a variety of health-care providers. However, a universal definition of the term is not as common. For the purposes of this manual, a red flag will be defined as a sign or symptom that is a strong predictor of pathology. Given a cluster of red flags that indicates a specific pathology or dysfunction of a particular organ system, it would be prudent to seek medical attention. However, if pathology has already been diagnosed, some red flags may be expected. For example, the complaint of chest pain for a known cardiac patient may be a common occurrence & may be less likely to trigger activation of emergency medical care than in an individual with sudden onset of chest pain & no cardiac history. Thus, it is up to the health-care provider to determine which red flags are appropriate to monitor and which should be acted upon immediately.

The purpose of this pocket guide is to help the health-care provider complete a thorough medical screening, identify red flags, & determine if the patient's needs are within the practitioner's scope of practice or if a referral would be appropriate. It is not designed to provide a differential diagnosis. It is the practitioner's responsibility to know the scope of his/her practice act.

Elements of Patient Management

This pocket guide will emphasize the first 3 elements of patient management:

  • Examination-The process of obtaining a history, performing a review of systems, & administering tests/measures. This examination process may identify concerns that require consultation with or referral to another provider.

  • Evaluation-The dynamic process of making clinical judgments based on the data from the examination.

  • Diagnosis-The process of organizing the data into defined clusters, syndromes, or categories.

  • Prognosis-Determination of the level of optimal improvement that may be attained.

  • Intervention-The purposeful and skillful ...

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