The aim of this unit is to present major concepts and principles of pathophysiology, illustrating their relationship to a range of common/important acute and chronic illnesses. This unit supports the topics in concurrent nursing units by: providing a scientific basis for understanding disease processes such as cellular injury, inflammation, infection, and shock; by elucidating the underlying mechanisms which result in clinical manifestations; and by presenting the rationale for therapeutic interventions. In particular, students will be introduced to pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics and pharmacological interventions related to the pathophysiology studied. Microbiology will also be discussed with reference to the growth and physiology of micro-organisms, their pathogenic potential, infection control and antibiotic treatment. In this unit, major disorders of the cardiovascular, respiratory, renal and nervous systems will be examined, as well as fluid and electrolyte imbalances, acid/base imbalances and shock. The pathophysiological principles underlying disorders of major body systems and subsystems will also be discussed.

Unit details

Location:
Study level:
Undergraduate
Credit points:
12
Unit code:
RBM2101

Prerequisites

HBM1202 - Anatomy and Physiology 2

HNB1204 - Foundations of Nursing and Midwifery 2

HNB1205 - Foundations in Nursing 2

HNB1206 - Professional Practice 1

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Describe the fundamentals of microbiology and the importance of infection control and its relevance in the work of health professionals;  
  2. Describe the major pathophysiological concepts, processes, progression, and complications of cardiovascular, respiratory, renal, nervous, acid base and fluid and electrolyte diseases/conditions;  
  3. Identify the environmental influences, which contribute to various pathophysiological processes, and relate these to disease prevention as well as pathogenesis;  
  4. Discuss the principles of pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics as they apply to specific drugs or drug classifications;  
  5. Discuss medication administration and nursing management of the client receiving medications including legal and ethical issues.  

Assessment

Assessment type Description Grade
Test Two (2) Tests (30 minutes each) 20%
Test Pharmacology Test (1 hour) 30%
Examination Written Assessment (2 hours) 50%
Student must attain a score of 50% for the Pharmacology Test (Hurdle) which tests critical knowledge essential for safe practice.

Required reading

Fundamentals of applied pathophysiology: An essential guide for nursing and healthcare students 3rd ed.
Peate, I. (2017).
Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons

McKenna's Pharmacology for Nursing and Health Professionals 2nd ed.
McKenna, L. & Lim, A.G (2014)
Sydney, NSW: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins

RECOMMENDED TEXT: McCance, K.L., & Huether, S.E (2014) Pathophysiology: The Biologic Basis for Disease in Adults and Children, 7th ed. St Louis, Missouri: Elsevier

Where to next?

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to apply for the course.

Study a single unit

This unit may be available as a single unit of study.

Find out more about how to apply for single units of study at VU.

VU takes care to ensure the accuracy of this unit information, but reserves the right to change or withdraw courses offered at any time. Please check that unit information is current with the Student Contact Centre.