40+ Research Topics on Respiratory Nursing: A Comprehensive Guide for Nursing Students

Respiratory nursing is a vital and intricate aspect of patient care that requires a deep understanding of the respiratory system and its associated conditions. As nursing students embark on a journey towards becoming skilled healthcare providers, it’s crucial to delve into respiratory nursing. This article provides research topics on respiratory nursing, fundamentals, PICOT questions, and several project and research ideas for nursing students to explore within this domain.

Introducing Respiratory Nursing

Respiratory nursing involves the specialized care of patients with disorders related to the respiratory system. This system comprises organs and tissues responsible for gas exchange, including the lungs and airways. Respiratory nurses play a pivotal role in assessing, diagnosing, treating, and educating patients about respiratory conditions such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), pneumonia, and more. Their expertise extends to monitoring patients on ventilators, administering medications, providing patient and family education, and collaborating with interdisciplinary teams to ensure optimal patient outcomes.

PICOT Questions on Respiratory Nursing

  1. P: Pediatric population with asthma; I: Implementation of an asthma action plan; C: Standard care without an action plan; O: Reduction in asthma exacerbations; T: 1 year. In pediatric patients with asthma, does implementing a personalized asthma action plan compared to standard care without a plan lead to a significant reduction in asthma exacerbations over 1 year?
  2. P: Elderly individuals with pneumonia; I: Early mobilization protocol; C: Conventional bed rest; O: Length of hospital stay; T: Throughout hospitalization. For elderly patients diagnosed with pneumonia, does the early mobilization protocol, in comparison to conventional bed rest, result in a shorter length of hospital stay throughout the period of hospitalization?
  3. P: Adult smokers; I: Smoking cessation counseling; C: No counseling; O: Smoking cessation rates; T: 6 months. Among adult smokers, does the provision of smoking cessation counseling enhance smoking cessation rates compared to those who do not receive counseling, over a period of 6 months?
  4. P: Patients post-lung surgery; I: Implementation of a pulmonary rehabilitation program; C: No rehabilitation program; O: Improvement in lung function; T: 3 months. In post-lung surgery patients, does the implementation of a pulmonary rehabilitation program lead to a significant improvement in lung function as compared to those without rehabilitation, within a span of 3 months?
  5. P: ICU patients on mechanical ventilation; I: Regular oral care protocol; C: Irregular oral care; O: Incidence of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP); T: During ICU stay. Among ICU patients receiving mechanical ventilation, does the adherence to a regular oral care protocol reduce the incidence of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) compared to irregular oral care, during their ICU stay?
  6. P: Patients with COPD; I: Telehealth monitoring; C: In-person clinic visits; O: Frequency of exacerbations; T: 1 year. For patients diagnosed with COPD, does telehealth monitoring lead to a lower frequency of exacerbations compared to in-person clinic visits, over the course of 1 year?
  7. P: Preterm infants; I: Kangaroo care; C: Standard neonatal care; O: Weight gain and respiratory stability; T: Until discharge. In preterm infants, does kangaroo care enhance weight gain and respiratory stability when compared to standard neonatal care, until the time of discharge?
  8. P: Patients with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA); I: Weight loss interventions; C: No weight loss interventions; O: Reduction in OSA severity; T: 6 months. Among patients diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), does engaging in weight loss interventions result in a significant reduction in the severity of OSA compared to those who do not undergo weight loss interventions, over a period of 6 months?
  9. P: Patients with cystic fibrosis; I: High-frequency chest wall oscillation (HFCWO) therapy; C: Conventional chest physiotherapy; O: Improvement in lung function; T: 12 weeks. For patients suffering from cystic fibrosis, does the utilization of high-frequency chest wall oscillation (HFCWO) therapy lead to a greater improvement in lung function compared to conventional chest physiotherapy over a span of 12 weeks?
  10. P: Patients undergoing tracheostomy; I: Implementation of a tracheostomy care bundle; C: Standard tracheostomy care; O: Incidence of tracheostomy-associated infections; T: Post-tracheostomy until decannulation. Among patients with tracheostomies, does the implementation of a tracheostomy care bundle decrease the incidence of tracheostomy-associated infections compared to standard tracheostomy care, from the time of tracheostomy placement until decannulation?

EBP Projects Ideas on Respiratory Nursing

  1. Assessing the impact of pulmonary rehabilitation on COPD patients’ quality of life.
  2. Evaluating the effectiveness of home oxygen therapy in improving exercise tolerance in patients with severe respiratory conditions.
  3. Developing guidelines for effective patient education on inhaler use and techniques.
  4. Investigating the role of telehealth interventions in monitoring and managing asthma in pediatric patients.
  5. Comparing the outcomes of non-invasive positive pressure ventilation versus invasive mechanical ventilation in patients with acute respiratory failure.

Capstone Project Ideas on Respiratory Nursing

  1. Creating a comprehensive respiratory care plan for a long-term care facility.
  2. Designing an educational program for school nurses to identify and manage asthma exacerbations in students.
  3. Exploring the psychosocial impact of chronic respiratory diseases on patients’ mental health and well-being.
  4. Developing a patient-centered discharge plan for individuals recovering from lung transplant surgery.
  5. Designing a simulation-based training module for nursing students to practice airway management techniques.

Research Topics on Respiratory Nursing

  1. The role of inflammatory markers in predicting exacerbations in COPD patients.
  2. Exploring the relationship between air pollution exposure and the incidence of respiratory diseases.
  3. Efficacy of chest physiotherapy techniques in clearing airway secretions in intubated patients.
  4. Nurses’ knowledge and adherence to ventilator-associated pneumonia prevention protocols.
  5. Impact of smoking cessation interventions on maternal and fetal outcomes in pregnant women.

Research Questions on Respiratory Nursing

  1. How does long-term exposure to secondhand smoke influence the respiratory health of non-smoking individuals?
  2. What are the barriers faced by nurses in effectively managing ventilator-associated events in critical care settings?
  3. How do cultural beliefs and practices affect the acceptance and utilization of respiratory therapies in diverse patient populations?
  4. What is the relationship between sleep quality and respiratory function in patients with obstructive sleep apnea?
  5. How does early recognition and management of respiratory distress impact patient outcomes in the emergency department?

Essay Topic Ideas & Examples

  1. Exploring the historical evolution of respiratory nursing and its impact on modern patient care.
  2. Analyzing the ethical dilemmas surrounding end-of-life decisions for patients on long-term mechanical ventilation.
  3. Discussing the role of family support in improving adherence to respiratory treatment regimens.
  4. Investigating the economic burden of respiratory diseases on healthcare systems and society.
  5. Reflecting on personal experiences in providing care for patients with acute respiratory distress.


As nursing students, the realm of respiratory nursing offers a diverse array of opportunities for research, evidence-based practice, and meaningful patient care. By engaging with the PICOT questions, project ideas, and research topics in this article, you can deepen your understanding of respiratory nursing and contribute to advancing patient care in this critical field. Remember that seeking further assistance and guidance is essential on this journey, and for comprehensive and well-structured papers, don’t hesitate to explore our professional writing services tailored to your needs. 

FAQs about Respiratory Nursing

Q1: What is the nurse’s first step in performing a respiratory assessment? A1: The nurse’s initial step in a respiratory assessment involves introducing themselves to the patient, gaining their trust, and ensuring their comfort before proceeding with the assessment.

Q2: How to do a respiratory assessment in nursing? A2: A respiratory assessment in nursing involves inspecting the patient’s breathing rate, pattern, and effort, auscultating lung sounds using a stethoscope, and finally assessing oxygen saturation levels through pulse oximetry.

Q3: What is the process of respiration in nursing? A3: The process of respiration in nursing refers to the exchange of gases, specifically oxygen and carbon dioxide, between the body and the environment. It encompasses the inhalation of oxygen-rich air, the exchange of gases in the alveoli, and the exhalation of carbon dioxide-laden air. Nursing assessment and interventions are vital to ensuring effective respiration and addressing respiratory issues.

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