A Detailed Review of Systems: An Educational Feature

Published:October 24, 2017DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nurpra.2017.08.012


      • Assessment is the foundation of health care.
      • A detailed review of systems is an essential element in each patient encounter.
      • A review of systems is crucial in gaining optimal understanding of a patient.
      • New problems can be discovered during a detailed review of systems.


      Assessment is the foundation of health care. A goal in health care is to attain a comprehensive history and review of systems during the first encounter with the patient. The evidence-based recommendations presented in this article are informed by unpublished data from real-life experiences using a detailed review of systems during an ongoing medical surveillance program involving former nuclear workers from a United States Department of Energy site.


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      Angela Phillips, DNP, APRN is an assistant professor at West Texas A&M University in Canyon, TX. She can be reached at [email protected].


      Arthur L.Frank, MD, PhD, at Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA.


      Collette Loftin, PhD, RN, is an assistant professor in the Department of Nursing at West Texas A&M University.


      Sara Shepherd, MAMS, is a database coordinator at the University of Texas Health Science Center in Tyler, TX.