Medical Surgical Tuberculosis #1


The nurse is admitting a client with a diagnosis of possible tuberculosis. Which type of isolation will the nurse prepare prior to admission?


  1. Airborne precautions.
    • Rationale:

      This answer is correct because airborne precautions along with a negative pressure room area that exhausts room air directly outside, or a HEPA approved filtered area, is the type of precautions that the nurse must prepare. Airborne precautions are for clients with pathogens transmitted by airborne routes such as measles, chickenpox, and tuberculosis.

  2. Droplet precautions.
    • Rationale:

      This answer is not correct because droplet precautions prevent transmission of pathogens spread through close respiratory secretions and special air handlers are not necessary since these types of pathogens do not remain infectious for long. Droplets may be generated by coughing, sneezing, or talking.

  3. Contact precautions.
    • Rationale:

      This answer is not correct because contact precautions are for any type of condition with risk of infection while in contact with the pathogen (such as wounds).

  4. MRSA precautions.
    • Rationale:

      This answer is not correct because MRSA does not have a specific isolation. MRSA requires contact precautions.


The focus of this question is choosing the appropriate isolation precautions for a client admitted with possible tuberculosis. Tuberculosis is easily spread through the air when in close contact with a client who has an infection so airborne precautions are appropriate.


Learning Outcomes

Tuberculosis (TB) is a respiratory infection caused by the bacteria mycobacterium tuberculosis. Mycobacterium tuberculosis is transmission in airborne droplet particles when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or speaks loudly. Clients with known or suspected TB infection should be placed in airborne precautions in a room with negative pressure to prevent the spread of infection.

Test Taking Tip

Donning and doffing of PPE are very testable topics that you will see on both nursing exams and NCLEX.
Donning: Gown, mask, goggles, gloves
Doffing: Gloves, goggles, gown, mask (Hint: alphabetic order)

Video Rationale