Many hospitals have an intensive therapy unit, sometimes called an intensive care or critical care unit, that is devoted to caring for people in a critical or unstable condition who need continuous monitoring. Frequently, patients in these units require mechanical ventilation to assist or take over their breathing. Blood pressure is checked continuously and heart rate and rhythm are monitored on an ECG machine. Fluids are given intravenously. If nutrients are required, they are supplied to the stomach through a tube or intravenously.
From the 2010 revision of the Complete Home Medical Guide © Dorling Kindersley Limited.
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