Psychiatric Aspects of Transplantation, II: Preoperative Issues

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This article is the second in a 3-part series on psychiatric issues in organ transplantation. In this article, we examine the waiting period before transplantation. In some instances, patients are too ill to be managed on an outpatient basis and must remain in the hospital until a new organ becomes available. Other candidates require repeated hospitalizations for exacerbations of end-stage disease. Both groups may be treated in the critical care setting, where nurses provide the majority of daily care and support. Consequently, critical care nurses should know how to intervene when psychiatric complications occur.