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Nursing In a Flash 
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Question Answer
What areas of decline are expected with aging?
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Declines in sensory abilities, physical abilities, pulmonary and immune system function
T/F Intellectual function, capacity for change and productive engagement in life decline as people age.
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What are the three most common mental health disorders in the elderly population?
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Depression, anxiety disorders and dementia
How long should a nurse take to collect data during an assessment of an elderly person?
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Data may need to be collected in a few sessions, at a pace that is most comfortable to the client.
A ____________ nursing assessment is the comprehensive, deliberate and systematic collection and interpretation of biopsychosocial data that is based on the special needs and problems of elderly people to determine current and past health, functional status, and human responses to mental health problems, both actual and potential.
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Biopsychosocial geropsychiatric assessment
What should a nurse ascertain at the beginning of an assessment?
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The patient's ability to participate
What are keys to a successful assessment of an elderly individual?
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Demonstrate respect, don't use child-like language, lower the pitch of your voice to accommodate hearing losses, eliminate distracting noises and insure sensory aids (glasses, hearing aids) are in place.
A history of ________ which can cause behavior changes, is an important assessment component of the physical examination.
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What should a nurse look for during a physical examination?
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Any evidence of movement disorders like tremors, abnormal movements, shuffling. Vital signs should be taken.
An elderly patient discloses that he was on a conventional antipsychotic many years ago. What should you assess for based on this information?
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Tardive dyskinesia and swallowing problems from tardive dyskinesia
A weight loss or gain of _____ lbs. should be noted and addressed if uncovered during an assessment.
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10 lbs.
What are complications that can develop from dysphagia?
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Dehydration, malnutrition, pneumonia, or asphyxiation.
Anticholinergic medications, cimetidine, digoxin and furosemide can all cause xerostomia, which is?
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Dry mouth
T/F Decreased taste and/or smell is common in the elderly and may reduce the amount of food eaten.
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How can an elderly person be encouraged to eat if they have lost their sense of smell or taste?
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Make mealtimes social and relaxing, prepare favorite foods, make the meal visually appealing.
What should a nurse assess for r/t elimination patterns in the elderly?
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Changes in eating, drinking or activity patterns that result in constipation, abuse of laxatives, fluid intake, urinary incontinence (which isn't normal and should be investigated further).
__________ is the use of duplicate medications, interacting medications or drugs used to treat adverse reactions.
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During a pharmacologic assessment, a nurse should ask specifically about about consumption of __________ due to its potential to interact adversely with medications.
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Grapefruit juice (narginin)
You are assessing a patient regarding their hx of mental illness. The patient denies any mental problems and mental illness symptomatology. You suspect that they aren't being truthful. What should you do?
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Respectfully accept their answer, avoid arguments or confrontation.
What are the common risk factors for depression in the elderly?
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Loss of a spouse, physical illness, low socioeconomic status, impaired functional status, and heavy alcohol consumption.
What is the best validated scale for assessing depression in patients with dementia because it uses information from both the patient and an outside informant?
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The Cornell Scale for Depression in Dementia (CSDD)
What does the RAID scale assess for?
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What are typical suspicions/delusions associated with dementia?
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People are stealing my things, this house is not my house, my relative is an imposter?
What are normal cognition changes with aging?
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Slowed information processing and memory retrieval
A patient has recently lost his wife and is in bereavement. The symptoms are similar to depressive disorders and adjustment disorder. How long do the symptoms have to last before he can be diagnosed with either?
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Over 2 months
________ is an important and well established risk factor for depression in the elderly.
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What characteristics are associated with an increased risk for committing suicide?
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Depression, hx of attempting suicide, family hx of suicide, firearms in the home, abuse of alcohol or other substances, unusual stress, chronic medical condition, and/or social isolation.
Elders who _________ are most likely to remain healthy, one reason to encourage a pet.
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Believe that they contribute to the welfare of others
What factors have been linked to increased use of mental health services in the elderly?
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Being married and having insurance
How is quality of life typically measured in the elderly population?
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Contentment over how the person has lived life and the extent to which their life has had meaning.

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