A client scheduled for a cardiac catheterization tells the nurse, “My mother died during this same procedure 10 years ago. I’m afraid the same thing will happen to me.” Which of the following responses by the nurse is the most appropriate?

  • “It’s normal to be scared. You are safe here. Let’s discuss the procedure.”
  • “I’ll ask the cardiologist to come and speak with you about your concerns.”
  • “We have the best outcomes of any facility in the area for this procedure.”
  • “Don’t worry. The procedure has improved a lot in the last 10 years.”
Number 1 is correct.
Demonstrating empathy for the client is an essential component for a therapeutic relationship, as is allowing an opportunity to verbalize feelings. Contacting the cardiologist passes responsibility for therapeutic communication on to someone else. Stating a record of good outcomes is not a component of therapeutic communication. Dismissing the client’s concerns is inconsistent with establishing a therapeutic relationship.