The most difficult thing with writing a medical case study is to decide what it should contain, and how detailed it should be. Should you include all the symptoms, or only those on which your diagnosis is based? Do you need to describe a daily progress or not?
Though you should try not to omit any important details, your medical case study doesn’t need to include everything. So the general advice is to leave not relevant information aside.
Fortunately, medical case studies follow the same format. And if you stick to it, you can be sure your case study includes everything needed. Read on to discover more about the medicalcase study format and what your case study should contain.
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Medical Case Study Format
This is a typical medical case study outline:
1. Abstract:: This section should include the same sections as the main text, just in succinct form.
2.Introduction: This section should attract the attention and interest of the reader, providing the subject, purpose, and merit of the case study.
3. Case Presentation / Case Report:: This is a very central section. Anyone reading this section should be able to form their own conclusions from this section alone.
4. Management and Treatment: In this section, the plan for care, treatment used, and the outcome are discussed.
5. Discussion: Being the final section, discussion is the most important section of the study. It should evaluate the case, comparing and contrasting it with published literature. It should also summarize the features of the study, justifying why the case is unique, and draw recommendations and conclusions.
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What Should You Include In Case Report?
The case report is the part of the medical case study where you introduce the raw data, medical history, and the results of any examinations that have been performed. The working diagnosis and management of the case are described in the case report as well.
Patient demographics – The demographics of the patient, including age, weight, height, sex, race, and occupation are to be included. Noting the patient’s race and occupation may appear as superfluous; however, this information may uncover pharmacogenomic or environmental factors.
Patient History – This section contains the complaint that brought the patient to seek your care. It is often very useful to use the patient’s own words. Next, you introduce the information obtained for compiling the history of the patient. It is not necessary to include every detail, just the relevant information that helped you to determine a diagnosis.
Clinical Examination – In this section, the diagnostic procedures and the timeline in which they were administered should be addressed. As in the previous section, every detail is not needed, just the information that was relevant to diagnosing the patient.
Differential Diagnosis – This section of the case report is a short list of the most likely diseases and/or disorders from the patient’s symptoms. This section is usually a result of the patient history section of the case report.
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If you work or study in the medical field, it is imperative that you know how to write a medical case study. They are used by medical professionals all over the world to learn about pioneering new practices in medicine and essentially learn how to better care for their patients. Writing a medical case study can be difficult and quite time consuming.
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What to Include in Management and Treatment section of Medical Case Study?
In this section of the clinical case study, you should clearly describe the plan for caring for the patient, as well as the care that was actually provided, and the resulting outcome.
You should be as specific as possible when describing the treatment used. In this section you should avoid the daily progress of the patient, including normal vital signs and other information that is not relevant.
Indicate the effect of any and all treatment, any unanticipated effects, the patient’s final outcome, any further proposed treatments, and the patient’s status at the time of the report.
You may want to include the patient’s own account of their improvement or lack thereof. But whenever possible, use a well-validated method of measuring their improvement.
For your medical case study, it may be possible to use data from visual analog scales for pain, or a medication usage journal.
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What Is Discussion Section Of Medical Case Study For?
The discussion section is used to synthesize the foregoing sections and explain the correlations as well as the apparent inconsistencies. This section should also include a detailed explanation of the literature review. If appropriate, using just a few sentences, describe any lesson to be learned from the medical case study.
You should take care not to make firm judgments or sweeping recommendations based upon speculation, limited and tenuous information, or on a few case reports. Only justifiable evidence-based recommendations should be noted.
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Types of Medical Case Studies
There are two types of medical case studies that you may come across during your education. The first only provides you the patient’s medical history and initial diagnosis. Based on the information contained within, you will be required to justify the diagnosis and provide recommendations for treatment.
The second type of case study describes the situation at hand and includes the chosen solution and furthermore, the outcome of said solution. With this type of case study, you will be required to determine how and why the solution succeeded or failed.
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Lots of non-nursing students have the mistaken notion that nursing students do not have to write a lot. After all, they spend their time in biology and chemistry labs and do field experiences. Actually, there is a long history of writing for such students:
- They must learn how to write a nursing entrance essay, because no one can get into nursing school without one. They often struggle with these, do some research and look for tips on writing a nursing school admission essay.
- If these students are looking of financial aid, the may indeed have to compose an amazing nursing scholarship essay
- Many courses in medical fields require essays, research papers, lab reports and more. And many of them are really challenging because they are all on scientific topics and often involve some lab research. A typical medical school essay, for example will involve research of existing literature and the setting up of a study based upon that literature.
Writing a Nursing Essay
Nursing students will find that a basic essay assignment will have the same structure as essays they have written for non-medical courses – introduction, body, and conclusion. The one thing that may differ in the essay writing process may be the formatting. It is common for Harvard formatting to be required in medical programs, so students will want to research Harvard strategies for essay writing. The “rules” are definitely a bit different.
The other caveat in all of this is that medical students’ essays do regularly involve some lab research that the student has conducted. In these cases, the conclusion will be a bit different from that of another type of essay. Often, the conclusion must speak to the significance of the results of a study. Learning how to write a conclusion for a nursing essay can be a bit challenging and will take some practice.
Writing That Nursing Case Study Essay
It is inevitable. As nursing students move into their upper level coursework, they will be spending far more time in hospitals completing lots of field experience. And there is coursework associated with those practicums. Part of that coursework will involve one or more case study essays. These are different from any other writing assignments you have had in the past. Let’s look at how a case study is structured – while specific department guidelines may vary a bit, the elements will be common.
What is a Case Study?
A nursing case study is an in-depth study of a patient that is encountered during the student’s daily practice in a practicum. They are important learning experiences because the student can apply classroom/theoretical learning to an actual situation and perhaps make some conclusions and recommendations. It will require lots of planning of methodology, literature reviews, and careful documentation as the case study proceeds.
Sections of a Case Study
There are three large sections – Information about the Patient; The Nurse’s Assessment of the Patient’s Status; and the Treatment Plan, along with Recommendations. Within each large section there are sub-sections.
Section 1 – Patient Status
This section includes demographic information, the patient’s medical history, and the current patient’s diagnosis, condition, and treatment.
Here you will obviously speak about the patient – and you will commit all of this information to writing. Do not rely on your memory – write everything down. You will also need to explain why the information is important to include in your study. You will need to include the reasons why the patient sought medical care and make note of the first symptoms the patient experienced. Next, you will identify the subsequent diagnosis that was made.
Given the diagnosis, what is the process/progression of the disease? You should include its causes, the symptoms, what you have observed. Describe what your role as a nurse will be.
Section 2 – Nursing Assessment
You will need to prepare your own assessment of the patient’s condition. And as you produce that assessment, be certain to explain why you have made each assessment. For example, suppose a patient has a diagnosis of cancer. One of the symptom presentations is difficulty in urination. You will need to document that urination issue and suggest potential causes of it. Then you will need to come up with options for treatment based upon the potential causes. And, in this case, how will you determine the cause of the issue?
Section 3 – The Current Treatment and Recommendations for Improving It
Describe the treatment – medication, therapy, etc. and explain why each treatment is appropriate for the disease. You will also need to discuss how the treatment plan is improving the patient’s quality of life.
What are the treatment goals? What are the benchmarks for assessing success and how, specifically, will it be documented?
The Implementation and Documentation
Once the treatment has been implemented, it will be your job to document each treatment activity – time, dose, etc. – and then track the improvement that does or does not occur. Suppose, for example, that you begin a regimen of a diuretic for your cancer patient. How will you determine success? How long will you implement the treatment to determine success or not? And if it is not successful, what is your next treatment option?
The data you gather must be carefully recorded and then reported in this section of your case study. This is the same as any scientific study. You must also analyze the data before you make decisions about the efficacy of the treatment plan and come to conclusions.
Toward the end of this section, you will be making recommendations – they may be simply to continue the current treatment plan; you may have conducted some research that shows another or an additional treatment plan is warranted. In this case, you may very well recommend this new treatment plan. Just remember, you must justify any recommendation you make, and usually this comes from medical research literature.
Crafting a nursing case study really has two major tasks.
- First, you select a patient, and begin to collect history. You also set up treatment plans and collect data to determine the efficacy of the plan and then determine your recommendations.
- Second, you actually have to write up the final piece. And it must be impeccably written.
If you have concerns about your writing skills, consider finding an essay writing service nursing department. While there are lots of writing services out there, you want one that has a specific group of researchers and writers with experience in producing medical case studies. You may even find a specific nursing essay writing service UK that exists only for helping medical program students. Such experts will be familiar with the style, tone, formatting, and terminology and can make quick work of your write-up.
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