Asthma Nursing Care Plan(NCP)-Ineffective Airway Clearance

    Asthma Asthma is a disorder of the bronchial airways characterized by periods of bronchospasm. It may be extrinsic (allergic) or intrinsic (non- allergic). Extrinsic asthma usually begins in childhood and the client may be allergic to dust, pollen, insects, mold spores, smoke, medications and foods.ntrinsic asthma is triggered by internal disorders such as common colds, upper respiratory infection or exercise. There are no identified allergies and it occurs over age 35.

It is considered as an inherited disorder that interacts with environmental factors causing the disease. It involves airway inflammation and periodic narrowing of airway lumina (hyperreactivity). Moreover, it is the result of individual response to a wide variety of stimuli and is therefore episodic in nature with fluctuations or worse exacerbation of symptoms.

 Asthma Nursing Care Plan (NCP) – Ineffective Airway Clearance

Nursing Diagnosis


Nursing Interventions



Nursing Diagnosis: Ineffective Airway ClearancePossible Etiologies: (Related to)

  • Bronchospasm
  • Increased production of secretions; retained secretions; thick, viscous secretions
  • Decreased energy/ fatigue

Defining characteristics: (Evidenced by)

  • Statement of difficulty in breathing
  • Feeling of chest constriction
  • Changes in depth/ rate of respiration; tachypnea
  • Tachycardia
  • Use of accessory muscles or marked respiratory effort
  • Abnormal breath sound, inspiratory and expiratory wheezing
  • Cough (persistent), without sputum production
  • Prolonged expiration

Goals/ Objectives:Short term goal:

Client will demonstrate signs of patent airway and adequate oxygen exchange within 3 days.


Long term goal:

Client will demonstrate behaviours to improve or maintain airway clearance and identify potential complications and initiate appropriate actions.



Nursing Actions

  1. Assess respiratory status every hour during acute phase: lung sounds, respiratory rate and depth, presence and severity of wheezing, breathing pattern, use of accessory muscles.
  2. Assist patient to assume to comfortable position, i.e. elevate head of bed, have client lean on overbed table or sit on the edge of bed.
  3. Keep environmental pollution to a minimum according to individual situation.
  4. Encourage and assist abdominal and pursed – lip breathing exercises.
  5. Increase fluid intake to 3000ml/ day within cardiac tolerance.
  6. Provide warm liquids and recommend intake of fluids between meals, instead of during meals.
  7. Administer medications as indicated.
  8. Monitor side effects of bronchodilator (tremors/ tachycardia).
  9. Provide supplemental humidification, e.g., neutralizer in respiratory treatments.
  10. Monitor ABGs, pulse oximetry, chest x- ray.


  1. Some degree in bronchospasm is present with obstruction in airway and may be manifested with wheezing or absent breath sounds in severe asthma. Tachypnea is usually present to some degree and respiratory dysfunction is variable depending on underlying process such as allergic reaction.
  2. Elevation of head of the bed facilitates respiratory function by use of gravity, however client in distress may seek position that most eases breathing.
  3. Precipitators of allergic type of respiratory reactions that can trigger or exacerbate onset of acute episode.
  4. Provides some means to cope with or control dyspnea and reduce air trapping.
  5. Hydration helps thin secretions, facilitating expectoration and using warm liquids may decrease bronchospasm.
  6. Fluids during meals can increase gastric distension and pressure on the diaphragm.
  7. Anticholinergic medications are the first line drugs for clients with this condition.
  8. Humidity helps reduce viscosity of secretions, facilitating expectoration and may.
  9.  Breathing exercises help enhance diffusion, nebulizer medications can reduce bronchospasm and stimulate expectoration.
  10. Establishes baseline for monitoring progression/ regression of disease process.
Outcome Criteria:Client will verbalize reduction or absence in difficulty in breathing and feeling of chest constriction, respiration and cardiac rate within normal range, absence or reduction of inspiratory and expiratory wheezing, and ability to resume to activities.

Client will be able to identify and avoid potential allergens or stimuli that would trigger asthma attack and be able to handle symptoms if recurrence comes, prompt follow up check up and to always bring or have the prescribed medication/s on hand in case asthma occurs.

Palandri, M.K. and Sorrentino, C.R. (1993). Black and Matassarin – Jacobs, Pocket Companion for Luckmann and Sorensen’s Medical-Surgical Nursing:A Psychophysiologic Approach. 4th Edition. W.B. Saunders.



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About Ira Hope

Writing is an integral part of my nursing career. It is my way to reach more people and empower them with the roles of nurses. Currently, I'm working as a nurse in a private hospital specifically in the Emergency Room. Emergency nursing is my forte.

One thought on “Asthma Nursing Care Plan(NCP)-Ineffective Airway Clearance

  1. Melissa Arteaga

    Asthma is debilitating disease because it can also shorten the life of the sufferer. In some cases, asthma is also very life threatening.