Therapist Perceptions of Physical Counterpressure Maneuvers for the Management of Pre-Syncope

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Abstract

Purpose:

To evaluate for change in therapists' perceptions of managing a patient with a near syncopal occurrence in the acute care setting after an educational in-service regarding physical counterpressure maneuvers (PCMs).

Methods:

This study is a single-group pretest/posttest design. Fifteen employed therapists from a major urban hospital center completed a survey before an in-service in which therapists were taught how to apply PCM during clinical care. Physical counterpressure maneuvers are volitional isometric muscle contractions of the upper and lower extremities intended to abort or delay syncope. A postsurvey completed 3 months after the in-service. Descriptive statistics and Wilcoxon signed-rank test were used to analyze the data.

Results:

A statistically significant difference was found in 3 questions regarding therapists' perception of preparedness after being instructed on using PCM as a technique to manage syncopal symptoms and reduced need to call for assistance when managing a patient with pre-syncopal symptoms (P < .05).

Conclusion:

After instruction on applying PCM to manage syncopal symptoms, subjects reported feeling more prepared to manage a patient with pre-syncopal symptoms and felt better prepared to independently manage a patient with pre-syncopal symptoms. Physical counterpressure maneuvers may have clinical applicability in this setting as an additional intervention available to manage pre-syncope.

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