Physical Restraints

Restraints are used not only to control a patient when verbal interventions have failed but also to facilitate the appropriate evaluations of patients with underlying organic disorders who are too agitated or lack the mental capacity to be reasoned with and control themselves. When used properly and appropriately, restraints are more humane than allowing patients to injure themselves or others. Restraints should be used to prevent harm, to allow for further evaluation of a violent patient, or in response to a patient's request for them. Restraints should never be used with orthopedic problems or certain medical problems, such as myocardial infarction, when a worsening of symptoms may result from using the restraints and sensory deprivations may be more harmful than helpful (T§ble..293-2).

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