Mayo Clinic wants a "6th vital sign"

Just how many do we need?

For a host of reasons, at least half of patients fail to comply with the treatments their doctors prescribe. Dr. Edward C. Rosenow III of the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine calls compliance “the sixth vital sign,” as important as respiration, heart rate, temperature, blood pressure and pain in evaluating a patient’s medical status.

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  • Anonymous

    Assessment of compliance with recommended therapy is just that, an assessment. Vital signs are objective measurements, in units. Compliance is not a vital sign, any more than is happiness. Why sow confusion?

  • Allen

    The nurses’ chart is full of these pet-rocks of JACHO, etc. I find it amazing to read our nurses’ notes, and laughable that anyone really thinks assessing all those things on every patient is doable, let alone useful.

    For the record, I think the 5th vital sign is the pulse-ox (an objective measurement). Pain and the other ‘assessments’ that aren’t quantifiable and reproducible are, IMHO, not vital signs. They’re opinions.

  • Anonymous

    Lets add patient weight and BMI

  • Anonymous

    I really appreciate all the work MD’s do but as a nurse I find it offensive that you would think this is not vitally important to a patient’s medical care. I personally know that Md’s are burdened with copius amounts of documentation. However if this was documented somehow I think the communication between primary care and specialists would be greatly enhanced. Try to have an open my towards change.