social isolation

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1. the process of separating, or the state of being alone.
2. the physiologic separation of a part, as by tissue culture or by interposition of inert material.
3. the extraction and purification of a chemical substance of unknown structure from a natural source.
4. the separation of infected individuals from those uninfected for the period of communicability of a particular disease; see also quarantine.
5. the separation of an individual with a radioactive implant from others to prevent unnecessary exposure to radioactivity.
6. the successive propagation of a growth of microorganisms until a pure culture is obtained.
7. in psychiatry, a defense mechanism in which emotions are separated from the ideas, impulses, or memories to which they usually connect, so that the idea or impulse enters consciousness detached from its unacceptable feeling.
isolation precautions special precautionary measures, practices, and procedures used in the care of patients with contagious or communicable diseases. The centers for disease control and prevention (CDC) provides explicit and comprehensive guidelines for control of the spread of infectious disease in care of hospitalized patients. The type of infectious disease a patient has dictates the kind of isolation precautions necessary to prevent spread of the disease to others.

Isolation practices have evolved over the years. Changes have been based on new epidemiological data, emergence of new or drug-resistant organisms, and the need to protect patients and hospital personnel. The hospital infection control practices advisory committee (HICPAC) advises the CDC on the need to update and revise guidelines and policies related to prevention of hospital acquired infections. Present guidelines distinguish two types of isolation precautions: (1) standard precautions, which synthesize major features of earlier practices of universal precautions and isolation of moist body substances; and (2) transmission-based precautions, based on routes of transmission, designed to be used together with the standard precautions, divided into the three subgroups of airborne, droplet, and contact precautions. These are identified for disorders associated with a high index of suspicion for infection.

The recommendations of the CDC for isolation practices are categorized as follows:

Category 1A: Strongly recommended for all hospitals and strongly supported by well designed experimental or epidemiological studies.

Category 1B: Strongly recommended for all hospitals and reviewed as effective by experts in the field and a consensus of HICPAC based on strong rationale and suggestive evidence, even though definitive scientific studies have not been done.

Category 2: Suggested for implementation in many hospitals; recommendations may be supported by suggestive clinical or epidemiological studies; a strong theoretical rationale or definitive studies may be applicable to some, but not all, hospitals.
General Principles of Patient Care. In addition to the specific measures taken to prevent the spread of certain types of infectious diseases, there are general principles that are basic to the care of any patient who is a source of infection to others or likely to become infected by coming in contact with others. Factors most important in preventing spread of infection are proper disinfection techniques and conscientious hand washing. The hands are used for many tasks in patient care and are therefore likely to be an excellent source of infection if they are not washed properly before and after each contact with the patient or with contaminated articles.
protective isolation (reverse isolation) a formerly common type of isolation designed to prevent contact between potentially pathogenic microorganisms and persons with seriously impaired resistance. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention deleted this category in 1983, but a few institutions continue to use it. Several studies have demonstrated no significant reduction in infection rates when it was being used.
social isolation a nursing diagnosis approved by the North American Nursing Diagnosis Association, defined as aloneness experienced by an individual as a negative or threatening state. Contributing factors are many and varied and include delay in accomplishing developmental tasks, alterations in physical appearance or mental status, social behavior or social values that are not accepted, inadequate personal resources, and inability to engage in satisfying personal relationships. Negative feelings of aloneness are subjective, existing when the patient/client says they do. When one suspects that a patient/client is experiencing social isolation, the diagnosis must be validated by a thorough assessment. The individual may express feelings of abandonment, rejection, or dread, demonstrate or verbalize a desire for more contact with the nurse or with family members, become more irritable or restless or less physically active, or develop a sleep or eating disorder. See also impaired social interaction.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.

social isolation

The virtual absence of interaction with others, outside of that required to perform basic life functions, such as food shopping, transportation, work and entertainment. Social isolation is common in the disabled, divorced and elderly, as well as in those with mental disorders and alcoholism, and is a risk factor for both suicide and deaths from all causes.
Segen's Medical Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved.

social isolation

Psychology The virtual absence of interaction with others, outside of that required to perform basic life functions–eg, food shopping, transportation, work, and entertainment. See Anaclytic depression, Nuclear family. Cf Companionship, Extended family, Marriage bonus, Most significant other, Pet therapy, Social interaction.
McGraw-Hill Concise Dictionary of Modern Medicine. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

so·cial is·o·lation

(sō'shăl ī'sŏ-lā'shŭn)
A state in which the client is alone. It is usually thought of as being imposed by others and seen as negative. (NANDA-approved nursing diagnosis).
Medical Dictionary for the Health Professions and Nursing © Farlex 2012
References in periodicals archive ?
"Looking at the effect of loneliness and social isolation on health outcomes it has a profound impact on life expectancy, on non-elective admissions and on both the on-set and the progression of long term conditions."
Prior studies in humans have measured effects of social isolation in circulating white blood cells, but not in the brain, and studies in mammalian models have typically focused on effects of much longer isolation periods (weeks or more).
The study, appearing in the American Journal of Epidemiology, says addressing social isolation holds promise if studies show interventions are effective, as they could be relatively simple and could influence other risk factors, as social isolation is also associated with hypertension, inflammation, physical inactivity, smoking, and other health risks.
Minister for Children, Older People and Social Care, Huw Irranca-Davies said: "Loneliness and social isolation are growing problems not just here in Wales but across the UK and beyond - and with one in every five people now experiencing loneliness and/or social isolation.
social isolation CARLA MAGEE CO DOWN "The focus is on children who are at risk of social isolation." The scheme will be open to 20 children aged between eight and 18, who will learn to surf with the help of a volunteer mentor.
Association treasurer and former Kirklees councillor Jamil Akhtar said: "The purpose of the seaside trip is removing the problem of social isolation and to enable older people to enjoy life, maintaining health and social contact with other people.
The art of nurturing a dog or cat relieves feelings of social isolation. Studies have shown that pet owners who have a companion tend to be healthier.
Several of those interviewed said poor public transport and having no internet access were also causes of social isolation. Many others spoke positively about where they lived and the community groups that support the town.
HCT Group helps tackle social isolation by providing transport for marginalised people and communities, paid for by the revenues of commercial bus contracts.
The researchers found that 19 percent of respondents had moderate perceived social isolation and 6 percent had high perceived social isolation.
Previous studies have determined that social isolation for two weeks in mice had resulted in the upregulation of the signalling molecule neuropeptide, tachykinin 2 (Tac2)/neurokinin B (NkB) - a short protein molecule.

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