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Case Study: Mononucleosis

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Unit 2 Case Study
Mononucleosis is a viral infection that can create dangerous circumstances within the spleen. Most individuals diagnosed with this illness are told to avoid contact sports and strenuous activity due to the fact that during its course, it can cause the spleen to swell multiple times its normal size (DerSarkissian, 2016). During the infection, the spleen, an organ involved in storing and educating lymphocytes, is highly active with a high volume of blood in order to fight off the virus. This swelling also thins the spleen’s surrounding capsule, making it more susceptible to major injury (Bjerke, 2014).
If the spleen is damaged, it can cause severe internal bleeding in the abdominal cavity. The spleen is highly vascularized and
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The most common sensation is abdominal tenderness in the upper left quadrant of the abdomen. If internal bleeding results in blood loss of more than 5-10% of the total blood volume, the patient may begin to enter into early shock, which usually presents as tachycardia, anxiety, and restlessness. If the bleeding continues, the patient’s sympathetic nervous system may go into overdrive, causing the patient to go into overt shock. This blood loss can also cause pallor of the skin, decreased capillary refill, and decreased pulse pressure. The patient typically needs surgery to repair or, more commonly, remove the spleen in a procedure known as a splenectomy (Bjerke,…show more content…
Once it has been oxygenated in the lungs, the blood returns to the heart via the pulmonary veins, emptying into the left atrium. It then travels through the bicuspid, or mitral, valve into the left ventricle. It is then pushed through the aortic semilunar valve into the aorta, where it travels through the ascending aorta, aortic arch, and descending aorta. This is known as the thoracic aorta until it passes through the aortic aperture in the diaphragm, after which it is known as the abdominal aorta. The blood then travels into the first main branch off of the thoracic aorta, known as the celiac trunk. The spleen gets the majority of its blood supply from the splenic artery, the largest branch off of the celiac trunk that runs superior and inferior to the pancreas. The splenic artery is supplemented by short gastric vessels (Pai,
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