Study objective and study design
Delirium is among the major conditions that pose a great risk in the health of elderly patients undergoing orthopedic surgery. Therefore, this study was conducted to unravel this problem in the orthopedic unit. The broad objective of the study was to investigate the knowledge of orthopedic nurses’ about delirium and the risk factors associated with it in the geriatric population hospitalized at the hospital (Meako, Thompson & Cochrane, 2011). To achieve this, the study employed a pretest and a posttest quasi-experiment study design to test the effectiveness of an educational intervention that was based on nationally recommended guidelines for delirium education.
Dependent and independent study variables
The dependent variable was the level of knowledge among the orthopedic nurses about delirium in hospitalized orthopedic patients. The independent variables were; the years of experience of the nurses ranging from less than 1 year to more than 50 years, the highest education degree attained, and the primary work shift in which each nurse worked.
Levels of data measurement
Table 2 contains the demographic data of the study participants that can be used to explore the different levels of data measurement. The data on the number of years of experience among the nurses who participated in the study is an example of an interval level of data measurement because the data contains a range (Polit, 2010). Likewise, the data on the work shift of the nurses utilizes an interval level of data measurement since there is the use of the day, evening, and night-shift timelines. The ordinal level of measurement entails the ranking of a data set and this is the case with the data on the highest level of degree achieved by the nurse in the aforementioned table.
The Significance of demographic data
Demographic data provide information regarding the characteristics of the participants for the study. This is of utmost importance in the determination of whether the population sample selected for the study is a true representation of the target population. Additionally, it relays important information to the readers and researchers which can be used for data analysis and replication of the study in the future where necessary (Hammer, 2011). As a result, research gaps and the credibility of the research can further be determined. Without the inclusion of demographic information, the study faces the risk of generalization which assumes that the phenomenon under research is the same regardless of the characteristics of the population. Therefore, it is pertinent for researchers to provide reliable demographic information such as racial identity, gender, level of education amongst others depending on the nature of the study conducted.
Interpretation of results
A close look at table 7 reveals that there was a statistical improvement in some of the question types and question pairs from the pretest results which highlights the effectiveness of the education intervention (Meako, Thompson & Cochrane, 2011). The question pairs 1(predisposing risk factors), 3(delirium), 6(precipitating risk factors), 8(medications), and 9(delirium) all achieved a statistical significance level of P-value<0.005.
Clinical significance of the study
Based on the study results, there is a need to increase awareness about delirium amongst healthcare providers, which can be achieved through the implementation of training programs. Through this, healthcare providers can be trained about the different aspects of the condition such as its risk factors in the elderly population, signs, symptoms, and the medications implicated in causing it. At the bare minimum, the clinical practice should implement a standardized guideline for the assessment of delirium in all hospitalized patients to overcome the adverse consequences associated with it.
Polit, D. F. (2010). Data analysis & statistics for nursing research. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall. Retrieved from https://www.academia.edu/39517579/Statistics_And_Data_Analysis_For_Nursing_Research_2nd_Edition_by_Denise_F_Polit_Ph_D_FAAN
Hammer, C. S. (2011). The importance of participant demographics. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 20(4), 261. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/51763571_The_Importance_of_Participant_Demographics
Meako, M. E., Thompson, H. J., & Cochrane, B. B. (2011). Orthopedic nurses’ knowledge of delirium in older hospitalized patients. Orthopaedic Nursing, 30(4), 241-248. Retrieved from https://journals.lww.com/orthopaedicnursing/Abstract/2011/07000/Orthopaedic_Nurses__Knowledge_of_Delirium_in_Older.6.aspx