The RT is called by a nurse to determine a care plan to assist a patient who is having difficulty…

The RT is called by a nurse to determine a care plan to
assist a patient who is having difficulty clearing secretions. The patient is
an alert, obese, 45-year-old man who underwent general anesthesia and surgery
for gallbladder removal 3 hours earlier. Physical signs indicate retention of
secretions, but there is no history of lung disease. Auscultation reveals
coarse expiratory crackles. The patient is breathing spontaneously, however,
his breathing is shallow and he has a very weak cough. Visual clues indicate
the patient has severe pain in the epigastric area. The patient was given an
injection of morphine to assist with the pain 1 hour earlier.

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