Deborah Worthington, RN, CPN

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Registered Nurse, Swedish Pediatric Specialty Care

Deborah is a Registered Nurse in the Pediatric Specialty Care Unit at Swedish. She is a Certified Pediatric Nurse (CPN) with a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Washington Seattle and a nursing degree from Shoreline Community College. Deborah has worked in clinical and administrative roles at several area hospitals including the University of Washington Medical Center (UWMC), Harborview Medical Center and Seattle Children’s. She has volunteer experience with the March of Dimes Western Washington Chapter; UWMC; Seattle Children’s, and as a Medical Volunteer for the Seattle Rock ‘n Roll Marathon. She enjoys working with the variety of ages and diagnoses of Pediatric patients seen in Pediatric Specialty Care.

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Set SMART fitness goals for 2017

February 01, 2017
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Many people start the new year with resolutions for improving their health and then, as January progresses, find themselves falling off the wagon. If this sounds like you, it might be worth starting over. Experts say you’re much likelier to stick to a resolution if it’s SMART: specific, measureable, achievable, relevant and time-bound.

Pain – The Fifth Vital Sign

January 11, 2016

When assessing patients, the four routine measurements of their status include their temperature, blood pressure, respiration and pulse. Pain has been recognized as the “fifth vital sign,” since it also reflects a patient’s status and needs. For our pediatric patients, pain is assessed along with routine vitals and also as dictated by a patient’s specific medical circumstances.

Diagnosed with Crohn's Disease: A Patient's Perspective

June 22, 2015

On our Pediatric unit, we see a number of patients with Crohn’s Disease or Ulcerative Colitis (UC). Some are well-established in their care, some are newly-diagnosed and just beginning treatment, and some are being seen by the doctor to explore if their symptoms warrant a definitive diagnosis of Crohn’s or UC. I interviewed one patient (referred to as our “Crohn’s Champion” for privacy) regarding his experience for the last 18 months since being diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease at 9 years old. 

Visiting Your Hospitalized Child

January 12, 2015

When your child is hospitalized, it’s understandable that family and friends will want to visit. This is often a help to both the patient and the parent at the bedside. To maximize the benefit of this support, keep the following guidelines in mind:

  • Visiting hours: Check with your nurse for the visiting hours and let your nurse know when you are able to visit. If there are extenuating circumstances for your family’s situation (e.g., a parent works night or swing shift and can only visit before or after), let the nursing staff know.

  • Security ...

Jaundice in newborn babies

January 24, 2014
As a new parent, you’re understandably eager and excited to leave the hospital and settle into your new routine with your baby. Sometimes, that routine is delayed due to the baby’s blood test confirming hyperbilirubinemia, also known as jaundice.

Jaundice in newborns is caused by an excess of red blood cells. Jaundice is seen as a yellow color to the skin, appearing first at the head (skin and sclera – or “whites of the eyes”) then progressing to the feet. As it decreases, it lessens in reverse. Before birth, the placenta removes bilirubin from the baby’s system; after birth, the baby’s liver takes over. In breast-fed babies, an imbalance between mother’s milk supply and baby’s feeding can lead to a higher-than-expected bili level. In addition to ensuring the baby is feeding well and having enough wet/stool diapers, phototherapy or “bili lights” may be needed. Bili lights help speed up the process by breaking down the bilirubin i...

Increasing Your Child's Comfort with Nitrous Oxide

January 23, 2013

You may be familiar with “laughing gas” as something you find at the dentist’s office but did you know it can also be used when your child is a patient at Swedish? Laughing gas is a mix of nitrous oxide and oxygen, but you might hear your pediatric nurses just call it “nitrous.” In pediatrics, we use it to help a patient relax and feel more comfortable during certain procedures such as IV placement or urinary catheterization.

Once your doctor or nurse has determined that your child is a good candidate for nitrous (without any contraindications such as conditions where air may be trapped in the body, pregnancy, or impaired level of consciousness), your nurses and certified child life specialist (CCLS) will explain the process: Your child will choose a flavor for the in...