A patient is brought to the emergency department with a burn injury. The nurse knows that the first systemic event after a major burn injury is what?

Answer Explanation: The initial systemic event after a major burn injury is hemodynamic instability, which results from loss of capillary integrity and a subsequent shift of fluid, sodium, and protein from the intravascular space into the interstitial spaces. This precedes GI changes. Respiratory arrest may or may not occur, largely depending on the presence or absence of smoke inhalation. Hypokalemia does not take place in the initial phase of recovery.

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