Rhythm, Rate, Volume, Drugs, Devices: Management of the Critically Ill Patient in Shock

Author(s): VanDruff Thomas Aaron

Contact Hours 1.15

CERP A 1.15

Pharmacology Hours 0.46

Expires Dec 31, 2023

Topics: Cardiovascular, Hemodynamics, Pharmacology

Population: Adult, Geriatric

Role: APRN

Member: Free
NonMember: $10.00

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Activity Summary

Required reading for all learners: Implicit Bias impacts patient outcomes

Shock states resulting in hypotension and alterations in cardiovascular performance are a common reason for ICU admission. An understanding of both cardiopulmonary physiology and a complex array of medications and mechanical modalities utilized for support of the patient in shock is vital for this dynamic population. This presentation reviews the roles of fluid resuscitation, cardioactive medications, and mechanical assistive devices in support of the patient in various shock states. Pharmacology content = 40%.


  • Discuss the main components of proper cardiac function including preload, afterload and contractility.
  • Identify common treatment modalities to improve cardiovascular function including the various fluids, vasopressors, inotropes and antiarrhythmics providers should choose.
  • Describe the use of mechanical devices to support cardiovascular function such as IABP, pacers and ventricular assist devices.

Continuing Education Disclosure Statement

Successful Completion

Learners must attend/view/read the entire activity and complete the associated evaluation to be awarded the contact hours or CERP. No partial credit will be awarded.


This activity has been reviewed by the Nurse Planner. It has been determined that the material presented here shows no bias. No conflicts of interest have been identified for any individual with the ability to influence the content of this activity. Accreditation refers to recognition of continuing education only and does not imply AACN or ANCC approval or endorsement of any commercial products discussed or displayed in conjunction with this educational activity.


The American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN) is accredited as a provider of nursing continuing professional development by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's (ANCC's) Commission on Accreditation, ANCC Provider Number 0012. AACN has been approved as a provider of continuing education in nursing by the California State Board of Nursing (CBRN), California Provider number CEP 1036. This activity is approved for 1.15 contact hours.

AACN programming meets the standards for most states that require mandatory continuing education contact hours for license and/or certification renewal. AACN recommends consulting with your state board of nursing or credentialing organization before submitting CE to fulfill continuing education requirements.

Refund Policy

Continuing Education Activities are nonrefundable.