A nurse practitioner is providing care for a 40-year-old male who is experiencing chronic insomnia in recent months while going through a divorce and child custody proceedings. The man is requesting a prescription for “sleeping pills” to help him through this time. Which of the following statements forms a valid basis for the nurse practitioner’s plan for treatment?
August 14, 2018
Lack of Mental Health – Nursing and Healthcare Policy paper guidelines
August 14, 2018
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Psychiatric Nursing Practice Exam Questions with Answers and Essay Papers

Psychiatric Nursing Practice Exam Questions with Answers and Essay Papers  

Question 1
Which nursing intervention is best for facilitating communication with a psychiatric client who speaks a foreign language?
ARely on nonverbal communication.
BSelect symbolic pictures as aids.
CSpeak in universal phrases.
DUse the services of an interpreter.
Question 2
The nurse explains to a mental health care technician that a client’s obsessive-compulsive behaviors are related to unconscious conflict between id impulses and the superego (or conscience). On which of the following theories does the nurse base this statement?
ABehavioral theory
BCognitive theory
CInterpersonal theory
DPsychoanalytic theory
 
Question 3
The nurse observes a client pacing in the hall. Which statement by the nurse may help the client recognize his anxiety?
A“I guess you’re worried about something, aren’t you?
B“Can I get you some medication to help calm you?”
C“Have you been pacing for a long time?”
D“I notice that you’re pacing. How are you feeling?”
Question 4
A client with obsessive-compulsive disorder is hospitalized on an inpatient unit. Which nursing response is most therapeutic?
AAccepting the client’s obsessive-compulsive behaviors
BChallenging the client’s obsessive-compulsive behaviors
CPreventing the client’s obsessive-compulsive behaviors
DRejecting the client’s obsessive-compulsive behaviors
 
Question 5
A 45-year-old woman with a history of depression tells a nurse in her doctor’s office that she has difficulty with sexual arousal and is fearful that her husband will have an affair. Which of the following factors would the nurse identify as least significant in contributing to the client’s sexual difficulty?
AEducation and work history
BMedication used
CPhysical health status
DQuality of spousal relationship
Question 6
Which nursing intervention is most appropriate for a client with anorexia nervosa during initial hospitalization on a behavioral therapy unit?
AEmphasize the importance of good nutrition to establish normal weight.
BIgnore the client’s mealtime behavior and focus instead on issues of dependence and independence.
CHelp establish a plan using privileges and restrictions based on compliance with refeeding.
DTeach the client information about the long-term physical consequence of anorexia.
 
Question 7
A nurse is evaluating therapy with the family of a client with anorexia nervosa. Which of the following would indicate that the therapy was successful?
AThe parents reinforce increased decision making by the client.
BThe parents clearly verbalize their expectations for the client.
CThe client verbalizes that family meals are now enjoyable.
DThe client tells her parents about feelings of low-self-esteem.
Question 8
The nurse is working with a client with a somatoform disorder. Which client outcome goal would the nurse most likely establish in this situation?
AThe client will recognize signs and symptoms of physical illness.
BThe client will cope with physical illness.
CThe client will take prescribed medications.
DThe client will express anxiety verbally rather than through physical symptoms.
 
Question 9
Which method would a nurse use to determine a client’s potential risk for suicide?
AWait for the client to bring up the subject of suicide.
BObserve the client’s behavior for cues of suicide ideation.
CQuestion the client directly about suicidal thoughts.
DQuestion the client about future plans.
Question 10
A client with a bipolar disorder exhibits manic behavior. The nursing diagnosis is Disturbed thought processes related to difficulty concentrating, secondary to flight of ideas. Which of the following outcome criteria would indicate improvement in the client?
AThe client verbalizes feelings directly during treatment.
BThe client verbalizes positive “self” statement.
CThe client speaks in coherent sentences.
DThe client reports feelings calmer.
 
Question 11
A client tells a nurse. “Everyone would be better off if I wasn’t alive.” Which nursing diagnosis would be made based on this statement?
ADisturbed thought processes
BIneffective coping
CRisk for self-directed violence
DImpaired social interaction
Question 12
Which information is most essential in the initial teaching session for the family of a young adult recently diagnosed with schizophrenia?
ASymptoms of this disease imbalance in the brain.
BGenetic history is an important factor related to the development of schizophrenia.
CSchizophrenia is a serious disease affecting every aspect of a person’s functioning.
DThe distressing symptoms of this disorder can respond to treatment with medications.
 
Question 13
A nurse is working with a client who has schizophrenia, paranoid type. Which of the following outcomes related to the client’s delusional perceptions would the nurse establish?
AThe client will demonstrate realistic interpretation of daily events in the unit.
BThe client will perform daily hygiene and grooming without assistance.
CThe client will take prescribed medications without difficulty.
DThe client will participate in unit activities.
Question 14
A client with bipolar disorder, manic type, exhibits extreme excitement, delusional thinking, and command hallucinations. Which of the following is the priority nursing diagnosis?
AAnxiety
BImpaired social interaction
CDisturbed sensory-perceptual alteration (auditory)
DRisk for other-directed violence
 
Question 15
A client who abuses alcohol and cocaine tells a nurse that he only uses substances because of his stressful marriage and difficult job. Which defense mechanisms is this client using?
ADisplacement
BProjection
CRationalization
DSublimation
Question 16
An 11-year-old child diagnosed with conduct disorder is admitted to the psychiatric unit for treatment. Which of the following behaviors would the nurse assess?
ARestlessness, short attention span, hyperactivity
BPhysical aggressiveness, low stress tolerance disregard for the rights of others
CDeterioration in social functioning, excessive anxiety and worry, bizarre behavior
DSadness, poor appetite and sleeplessness, loss of interest in activities
 
Question 17
The nurse understands that if a client continues to be dependent on heroin throughout her pregnancy, her baby will be at high risk for:
AMental retardation.
BHeroin dependence.
CAddiction in adulthood.
DPsychological disturbances.
Question 18
The emergency department nurse is assigned to provide care for a victim of a sexual assault. When following legal and agency guidelines, which intervention is most important?
ADetermine the assailant’s identity.
BPreserve the client’s privacy.
CIdentify the extent of injury.
DEnsure an unbroken chain of evidence.
 
Question 19
Which factor is least important in the decision regarding whether a victim of family violence can safely remain in the home?
AThe availability of appropriate community shelters
BThe nonabusing caretaker’s ability to intervene on the client’s behalf
CThe client’s possible response to relocation
DThe family’s socioeconomic status
Question 20
The nurse would expect a client with early Alzheimer’s disease to have problems with:
ABalancing a checkbook.
BSelf-care measures.
CRelating to family members.
DRemembering his own name.
 
Question 21
Which nursing intervention is most appropriate for a client with Alzheimer’s disease who has frequent episodes emotional lability?
AAttempt humor to alter the client mood.
BExplore reasons for the client’s altered mood.
CReduce environmental stimuli to redirect the client’s attention.
DUse logic to point out reality aspects.
Question 22
Which neurotransmitter has been implicated in the development of Alzheimer’s disease?
AAcetylcholine
BDopamine
CEpinephrine
DSerotonin
 
Question 23
Which factors are most essential for the nurse to assess when providing crisis intervention foe a client?
AThe client’s communication and coping skills
BThe client’s anxiety level and ability to express feelings
CThe client’s perception of the triggering event and availability of situational supports
DThe client’s use of reality testing and level of depression
Question 24
The nurse considers a client’s response to crisis intervention successful if the client:
AChanges coping skills and behavioral patterns.
BDevelops insight into reasons why the crisis occurred.
CLearns to relate better to others.
DReturns to his previous level of functioning.
 
Question 25
Two nurses are co-leading group therapy for seven clients in the psychiatric unit. The leaders observe that the group members are anxious and look to the leaders for answers. Which phase of development is this group in?
AConflict resolution phase
BInitiation phase
CWorking phase
DTermination phase
Question 26
Group members have worked very hard, and the nurse reminds them that termination is approaching. Termination is considered successful if group members:
ADecide to continue.
BElevate group progress
CFocus on positive experience
DStop attending prior to termination.
 
Question 27
The nurse is teaching a group of clients about the mood-stabilizing medications lithium carbonate. Which medications should she instruct the clients to avoid because of the increased risk of lithium toxicity?
AAntacids
BAntibiotics
CDiuretics
DHypoglycemic agents
Question 28
When providing family therapy, the nurse analyzes the functioning of healthy family systems. Which situations would not increase stress on a healthy family system?
AAn adolescent’s going away to college
BThe birth of a child
CThe death of a grandparent
DParental disagreement
 
Question 29
A client taking the monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) antidepressant isocarboxazid (Marplan) is instructed by the nurse to avoid which foods and beverages?
AAged cheese and red wine
BMilk and green, leaf vegetables
CCarbonated beverages and tomato products
DLean red meats and fruit juices
Question 30
Prior to administering chlorpromazine (Thorazine) to an agitated client, the nurse should:
AAssess skin color and sclera
BAssess the radial pulse
CTake the client’s blood pressure
DAsk the client to void
 
Question 31
The nurse understands that electroconvulsive therapy is primary used in psychiatric care for the treatment of:
AAnxiety disorders.
BDepression.
CMania.
DSchizophrenia.
Question 32
A client taking the MAOI phenelzine (Nardil) tells the nurse that he routinely takes all of the medications listed below. Which medication would cause the nurse to express concern and therefore initiate further teaching?
AAcetaminophen (Tylenol)
BDiphenhydramine (Benadryl)
CFurosemide (Lasix)
DIsosorbide dinitrate (Isordil)
 
Question 33
The nurse is administering a psychotropic drug to an elderly client who has history of benign prostatic hypertrophy. It is most important for the nurse to teach this client to:
AAdd fiber to his diet.
BExercise on a regular basis.
CReport incomplete bladder emptying.
DTake the prescribed dose at bedtime.
Question 34
The nurse correctly teaches a client taking the benzodiazepine oxazepam (Serax) to avoid excessive intake of:
ACheese
BCoffee
CSugar
DShellfish
 
Question 35
The nurse provides a referral to Alcoholics Anonymous to a client who describes a 20-year history of alcohol abuse. The primary function of this group is to:
AEncourage the use of a 12-step program.
BHelp members maintain sobriety.
CProvide fellowship among members.
DTeach positive coping mechanisms.
Question 36
Which client outcome is most appropriately achieved in a community approach setting in psychiatric nursing?
AThe client performs activities of daily living and learns about crafts.
BThe client’s is able to prevent aggressive behavior and monitors his use of medications.
CThe client demonstrates self-reliance and social adaptation.
DThe client experience experiences anxiety relief and learns about his symptoms.
 
Question 37
A client with panic disorder experiences an acute attack while the nurse is completing an admission assessment. List the following interventions according to their level of priority. a. Remain with the client. b. Encourage physical activity. c. Encourage low, deep breathing. d. Reduce external stimuli. e. Teach coping measures.
AABCDE
BADBCE
CACDBE
DADCBE
Question 38
The doctor has prescribed haloperidol (Haldol) 2.5 mg. I.M. for an agitated client. The medication is labeled haloperidol 10 mg/2 ml. The nurse prepares the correct dose by drawing up how many milliliters in the syringe?
A0.3
B0.4
C0.5
D0.6
 
Question 39
The nurse enters the room of a client with a cognitive impairment disorder and asks what day of the week it is: what the date, month, and year are; and where the client is. The nurse is attempting to assess:
AConfabulation
BDelirium
COrientation
DPerseveration
Question 40
Which of the following will the nurse use when communicating with a client who has a cognitive impairment?
AComplete explanations with multiple details
BPicture or gestures instead of words
CStimulating words and phrases to capture the client’s attention
DShort words and simple sentences
 
Question 41
A 75-year-old client has dementia of the Alzheimer’s type and confabulates. The nurse understands that this client:
ADenies confusion by being jovial.
BPretends to be someone else.
CRationalizes various behaviors.
DFills in memory gaps with fantasy.
Question 42
An elderly client with Alzheimer’s disease becomes agitated and combative when a nurse approaches to help with morning care. The most appropriate nursing intervention in this situation would be to:
ATell the client family that it is time to get dressed.
BObtain assistance to restrain the client for safety.
CRemain calm and talk quietly to the client.
DCall the doctor and request an order for sedation.
 
Question 43
In clients with a cognitive impairment disorder, the phenomenon of increased confusion in the early evening hours is called:
AAphasia
BAgnosia
CSundowning
DConfabulation
Question 44
Which of the following outcome criteria is appropriate for the client with dementia?
AThe client will return to an adequate level of self-functioning.
BThe client will learn new coping mechanisms to handle anxiety.
CThe client will seek out resources in the community for support.
DThe client will follow an establishing schedule for activities of daily living.
 
Question 45
The school guidance counselor refers a family with an 8-year-old child to the mental health clinic because of the child’s frequent fighting in school and truancy. Which of the following data would be a priority to the nurse doing the initial family assessment?
AThe child’s performance in school
BFamily education and work history
CThe family’s perception of the current problem
DThe teacher’s attempts to solve the problem
Question 46
The parents of a young man with schizophrenia express feelings of responsibility and guilt for their son’s problems. How can the nurse best educate the family?
AAcknowledge the parent’s responsibility.
BExplain the biological nature of schizophrenia.
CRefer the family to a support group.
DTeach the parents various ways they must change.
 
Question 47
The nurse collecting family assessment data asks. “Who is in your family and where do they live?” which of the following is the nurse attempting o identify?
ABoundaries
BEthnicity
CRelationships
DTriangles
Question 48
According to the family systems theory, which of the following best describes the process of differentiation?
ACooperative action among members of the family
BDevelopment of autonomy within the family
CIncongruent messages wherein the recipient is a victim
DMaintenance of system continuity or equilibrium
 
Question 49
The nurse is interacting with a family consisting of a mother, a father, and a hospitalized adolescent who has a diagnosis of alcohol abuse. The nurse analyzes the situation and agrees with the adolescent’s view about family rules. Which intervention is most appropriate?
AThe nurse should align with the adolescent, who is the family scapegoat.
BThe nurse should encourage the parents to adopt more realistic rules.
CThe nurse should encourage the adolescent to comply with parental rules.
DThe nurse should remain objective and encourage mutual negotiation of issues.
Question 50
A 16-year-old girl has returned home following hospitalization for treatment of anorexia nervosa. The parents tell the family nurse performing a home visit that their child has always done everything to please them and they cannot understand her current stubbornness about eating. The nurse analyzes the family situation and determines it is characteristic of which relationship style?
ADifferentiation
BDisengagement
CEnmeshment
DScapegoating
 

Psychiatric Nursing Practice Exam Questions with Answers and Essay Papers

Answers with explanations

Question 1
Correct answer is D Which nursing intervention is best for facilitating communication with a psychiatric client who speaks a foreign language?
Rely on nonverbal communication.
Select symbolic pictures as aids.
Speak in universal phrases.
Use the services of an interpreter.
Question 1 Explanation: An interpreter will enable the nurse to better assess the client’s problems and concerns. Nonverbal communication is important; however for the nurse to fully determine the client’s problems and concerns, the assistance of an interpreter is essential. The use of symbolic pictures and universal phrases may assist the nurse in understanding the basic needs of the client; however these are insufficient to assess the client with a psychiatric problem.
Question 2 Correct answer is D
The nurse explains to a mental health care technician that a client’s obsessive-compulsive behaviors are related to unconscious conflict between id impulses and the superego (or conscience). On which of the following theories does the nurse base this statement?
Behavioral theory
Cognitive theory
Interpersonal theory
Psychoanalytic theory
Question 2 Explanation: Psychoanalytic is based on Freud’s beliefs regarding the importance of unconscious motivation for behavior and the role of the id and superego in opposition to each other. Behavioral cognitive and interpersonal theories do not emphasize unconscious conflicts as the basis for symptomatic behavior.
Question 3 Correct answer is D
The nurse observes a client pacing in the hall. Which statement by the nurse may help the client recognize his anxiety?
“I guess you’re worried about something, aren’t you?
“Can I get you some medication to help calm you?”
“Have you been pacing for a long time?”
“I notice that you’re pacing. How are you feeling?”
  Question 3 Explanation: By acknowledging the observed behavior and asking the client to express his feelings the nurse can best assist the client to become aware of his anxiety. In option A, the nurse is offering an interpretation that may or may not be accurate; the nurse is also asking a question that may be answered by a “yes” or “no” response, which is not therapeutic. In option B, the nurse is intervening before accurately assessing the problem. Option C, which also encourages a “yes” or “no” response, avoids focusing on the client’s anxiety, which is the reason for his pacing.
Question 4 Correct answer is A
A client with obsessive-compulsive disorder is hospitalized on an inpatient unit. Which nursing response is most therapeutic?
Accepting the client’s obsessive-compulsive behaviors
Challenging the client’s obsessive-compulsive behaviors
Preventing the client’s obsessive-compulsive behaviors
Rejecting the client’s obsessive-compulsive behaviors
Question 4 Explanation: A client with obsessive-compulsive behavior uses this behavior to decrease anxiety. Accepting this behavior as the client’s attempt to feel secure is therapeutic. When a specific treatment plan is developed, other nursing responses may also be acceptable. The remaining answer choices will increase the client’s anxiety and therefore are inappropriate.
Question 5 Correct answer is A
A 45-year-old woman with a history of depression tells a nurse in her doctor’s office that she has difficulty with sexual arousal and is fearful that her husband will have an affair. Which of the following factors would the nurse identify as least significant in contributing to the client’s sexual difficulty?
Education and work history
Medication used
Physical health status
Quality of spousal relationship
Question 5 Explanation: Education and work history would have the least significance in relation to the client’s sexual problem. Age, health status, physical attributes and relationship issues have great influence on sexual expression.
Question 6 Correct answer is C
Which nursing intervention is most appropriate for a client with anorexia nervosa during initial hospitalization on a behavioral therapy unit?
Emphasize the importance of good nutrition to establish normal weight.
Ignore the client’s mealtime behavior and focus instead on issues of dependence and independence.
Help establish a plan using privileges and restrictions based on compliance with refeeding.
Teach the client information about the long-term physical consequence of anorexia.
Question 6 Explanation: Inpatient treatment of a client with anorexia usually focuses initially on establishing a plan for refeeding to combat the effects of self-induced starvation. Refeeding is accomplished through behavioral therapy, which uses a system of rewards and reinforcements to assist in establishing weight restoration. Emphasizing nutrition and teaching the client about the long-term physical consequences of anorexia maybe appropriate at a later time in the treatment program. The nurse needs to assess the client’s mealtime behavior continually to evaluate treatment effectiveness.
Question 7 Correct answer is A
A nurse is evaluating therapy with the family of a client with anorexia nervosa. Which of the following would indicate that the therapy was successful?
The parents reinforce increased decision making by the client.
The parents clearly verbalize their expectations for the client.
The client verbalizes that family meals are now enjoyable.
The client tells her parents about feelings of low-self-esteem.
Question 7 Explanation: One of the core issues concerning the family of a client with anorexia is control. The family’s acceptance of the client’s ability to make independent decisions is key to successful family intervention. Although the remaining options may occur during the process of therapy they would not necessarily indicate a successful outcome; the central family issues of dependence and independence are not addressed in these responses.
Question 8 Correct answer is D
The nurse is working with a client with a somatoform disorder. Which client outcome goal would the nurse most likely establish in this situation?
The client will recognize signs and symptoms of physical illness.
The client will cope with physical illness.
The client will take prescribed medications.
The client will express anxiety verbally rather than through physical symptoms.
Question 8 Explanation: The client with a somatoform disorder displaces anxiety onto physical symptoms. The ability to express anxiety verbally indicates a positive change toward improved health. The remaining responses do not indicate any positive change toward increased coping with anxiety.
Question 9 Correct answer is C
Which method would a nurse use to determine a client’s potential risk for suicide?
Wait for the client to bring up the subject of suicide.
Observe the client’s behavior for cues of suicide ideation.
Question the client directly about suicidal thoughts.
Question the client about future plans.
Question 9 Explanation: Directly questioning a client about suicide is important to determine suicide risk. The client may not bring up this subject for several reasons, including guilt regarding suicide, wishing not to be discovered, and his lack of trust in staff. Behavioral cues are important, but direct questioning is essential to determine suicide risk. Indirect questions convey to the client that the nurse is not comfortable with the subject of suicide and, therefore, the client may be reluctant to discuss the topic.
Question 10 Correct answer is C
A client with a bipolar disorder exhibits manic behavior. The nursing diagnosis is Disturbed thought processes related to difficulty concentrating, secondary to flight of ideas. Which of the following outcome criteria would indicate improvement in the client?
The client verbalizes feelings directly during treatment.
The client verbalizes positive “self” statement.
The client speaks in coherent sentences.
The client reports feelings calmer.
Question 10 Explanation: A client exhibiting flight of ideas typically has a continuous speech flow and jumps from one topic to another. Speaking in coherent sentences is an indicator that the client’s concentration has improved and his thoughts are no longer racing. The remaining options do not relate directly to the stated nursing diagnosis.
Question 11 Correct answer is C
A client tells a nurse. “Everyone would be better off if I wasn’t alive.” Which nursing diagnosis would be made based on this statement?
Disturbed thought processes
Ineffective coping
Risk for self-directed violence
Impaired social interaction
Question 11 Explanation: The nurse should take any nurse statements indicating suicidal thoughts seriously and further assess for other risk factors. The remaining diagnoses fail to address the seriousness of the client’s statement.
Question 12Correct answer is D
Which information is most essential in the initial teaching session for the family of a young adult recently diagnosed with schizophrenia?
Symptoms of this disease imbalance in the brain.
Genetic history is an important factor related to the development of schizophrenia.
Schizophrenia is a serious disease affecting every aspect of a person’s functioning.
The distressing symptoms of this disorder can respond to treatment with medications.
Question 12 Explanation: This statement provides accurate information and an element of hope for the family of a schizophrenic client. Although the remaining statements are true, they do not provide the empathic response the family needs after just learning about the diagnosis. These facts can become part of the ongoing teaching.
Question 13Correct answer is A
A nurse is working with a client who has schizophrenia, paranoid type. Which of the following outcomes related to the client’s delusional perceptions would the nurse establish?
The client will demonstrate realistic interpretation of daily events in the unit.
The client will perform daily hygiene and grooming without assistance.
The client will take prescribed medications without difficulty.
The client will participate in unit activities.
Question 13 Explanation: A client with schizophrenia, paranoid type, has distorted perceptions and views people, institutions, and aspects of the environment as plotting against him. The desired outcome for someone with delusional perceptions would be to have a realistic interpretation of daily events. The client with a distorted perception of the environment would not necessarily have impairments affecting hygiene and grooming skills. Although taking medications and participating in unit activities may be appropriate outcomes for nursing intervention, these responses are not related to client perceptions.
Question 14Correct answer is D
A client with bipolar disorder, manic type, exhibits extreme excitement, delusional thinking, and command hallucinations. Which of the following is the priority nursing diagnosis?
Anxiety
Impaired social interaction
Disturbed sensory-perceptual alteration (auditory)
Risk for other-directed violence
Question 14 Explanation: A client with these symptoms would have poor impulse control and would therefore be prone to acting-out behavior that may be harmful to either himself or others. All of the remaining nursing diagnoses may apply to the client with mania; however, the priority diagnosis would be risk for violence.
Question 15Correct answer is C
A client who abuses alcohol and cocaine tells a nurse that he only uses substances because of his stressful marriage and difficult job. Which defense mechanisms is this client using?
Displacement
Projection
Rationalization
Sublimation
Question 15 Explanation: Rationalization is the defense mechanism that involves offering excuses for maladaptive behavior. The client is defending his substance abuse by providing reasons related to life stressors. This is a common defense mechanism used by clients with substance abuse problems. None of the remaining defense mechanisms involves making excuses for behaviors.
Question 16Correct answer is B
An 11-year-old child diagnosed with conduct disorder is admitted to the psychiatric unit for treatment. Which of the following behaviors would the nurse assess?
Restlessness, short attention span, hyperactivity
Physical aggressiveness, low stress tolerance disregard for the rights of others
Deterioration in social functioning, excessive anxiety and worry, bizarre behavior
Sadness, poor appetite and sleeplessness, loss of interest in activities
Question 16 Explanation: Physical aggressiveness, low stress tolerance, and a disregard for the rights of others are common behaviors in clients with conduct disorders. Restlessness, short attention span, and hyperactivity are typical behaviors in a client with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Deterioration in social functioning, excessive anxiety and worry and bizarre behaviors are typical in schizophrenic disorders. Sadness, poor appetite, sleeplessness, and loss of interest in activities are behaviors commonly seen in depressive disorders.
Question 17Correct answer is B
The nurse understands that if a client continues to be dependent on heroin throughout her pregnancy, her baby will be at high risk for:
Mental retardation.
Heroin dependence.
Addiction in adulthood.
Psychological disturbances.
Question 17 Explanation: Babies born to heroin-dependent women are also heroin-dependent and need to go through withdrawal. There is no evidence to support any of the remaining answer choices.
Question 18Correct answer is D
The emergency department nurse is assigned to provide care for a victim of a sexual assault. When following legal and agency guidelines, which intervention is most important?
Determine the assailant’s identity.
Preserve the client’s privacy.
Identify the extent of injury.
Ensure an unbroken chain of evidence.
Question 18 Explanation: Establishing an unbroken chain of evidence is essential in order to ensure that the prosecution of the perpetrator can occur. The nurse will also need to preserve the client’s privacy and identify the extent of injury. However, it is essential that the nurse follow legal and agency guidelines for preserving evidence. Identifying the assailant is the job of law enforcement, not the nurse.
Question 19Correct answer is D
Which factor is least important in the decision regarding whether a victim of family violence can safely remain in the home?
The availability of appropriate community shelters
The nonabusing caretaker’s ability to intervene on the client’s behalf
The client’s possible response to relocation
The family’s socioeconomic status
Question 19 Explanation: Socioeconomic status is not a reliable predictor of abuse in the home, so it would be the least important consideration in deciding issues of safety for the victim of family violence. The availability of appropriate community shelters and the ability of the non abusing caretaker to intervene on the client’s behalf are important factors when making safety decisions. The client’s response to possible relocation (if the client is a competent adult) would be the most important factor to consider; feelings of empowerment and being treated as a competent person can help a client feel less like a victim.
Question 20Correct answer is A
The nurse would expect a client with early Alzheimer’s disease to have problems with:
Balancing a checkbook.
Self-care measures.
Relating to family members.
Remembering his own name.
Question 20 Explanation: In the early stage of Alzheimer’s disease, complex tasks (such as balancing a checkbook) would be the first cognitive deficit to occur. The loss of self-care ability, problems with relating to family members, and difficulty remembering one’s own name are all areas of cognitive decline that occur later in the disease process.
Question 21Correct answer is C
Which nursing intervention is most appropriate for a client with Alzheimer’s disease who has frequent episodes emotional liability?
Attempt humor to alter the client mood.
Explore reasons for the client’s altered mood.
Reduce environmental stimuli to redirect the client’s attention.
Use logic to point out reality aspects.
Question 21 Explanation: The client with Alzheimer’s disease can have frequent episode of labile mood, which can best be handled by decreasing a stimulating environment and redirecting the client’s attention. An over stimulating environment may cause the labile mood, which will be difficult for the client to understand. The client with Alzheimer’s disease loses the cognitive ability to respond to either humor or logic. The client lacks any insight into his or her own behavior and therefore will be unaware of any causative factors.
Question 22Correct answer is A
Which neurotransmitter has been implicated in the development of Alzheimer’s disease?
Acetylcholine
Dopamine
Epinephrine
Serotonin
Question 22 Explanation: A relative deficiency of acetylcholine is associated with this disorder. The drugs used in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease will act to increase available acetylcholine in the brain. The remaining neurotransmitters have not been implicated in Alzheimer’s disease.
Question 23Correct answer is C
Which factors are most essential for the nurse to assess when providing crisis intervention foe a client?
The client’s communication and coping skills
The client’s anxiety level and ability to express feelings
The client’s perception of the triggering event and availability of situational supports
The client’s use of reality testing and level of depression
Question 23 Explanation: The most important factors to determine in this situations are the client’s perception of the crisis event and the availability of support (including family and friends) to provide basic needs. Although the nurse should assess the other factors, they are not as essential as determining why the client considers this a crisis and whether he can meet his present needs.
Question 24Correct answer is D
The nurse considers a client’s response to crisis intervention successful if the client:
Changes coping skills and behavioral patterns.
Develops insight into reasons why the crisis occurred.
Learns to relate better to others.
Returns to his previous level of functioning.
Question 24 Explanation: Crisis intervention is based on the idea that a crisis is a disturbance in homeostasis (steady state). The goal is to help the client return to a previous level of equilibrium in functioning. The remaining answer choices are not considered the primary outcome of crisis intervention, although they may occur as a side benefit.
Question 25Correct answer is B
Two nurses are co-leading group therapy for seven clients in the psychiatric unit. The leaders observe that the group members are anxious and look to the leaders for answers. Which phase of development is this group in?
Conflict resolution phase
Initiation phase
Working phase
Termination phase
Question 25 Explanation: Increased anxiety and uncertainly characterize the initiation phase in group therapy. Group members are more self-reliant during the working and termination phases.
Question 26Correct answer is A
Group members have worked very hard, and the nurse reminds them that termination is approaching. Termination is considered successful if group members:
Decide to continue.
Elevate group progress
Focus on positive experience
Stop attending prior to termination.
Question 26 Explanation: As the group progresses into the working phase, group members assume more responsibility for the group. The leader becomes more of a facilitator. Comments about behavior in a group are indicators that the group is active and involved. The remaining answer choices would indicate the group progress has not advanced to the working phase.
Question 27Correct answer is C
The nurse is teaching a group of clients about the mood-stabilizing medications lithium carbonate. Which medications should she instruct the clients to avoid because of the increased risk of lithium toxicity?
Antacids
Antibiotics
Diuretics
Hypoglycemic agents
Question 27 Explanation: The use of diuretics would cause sodium and water excretion, which would increase the risk of lithium toxicity. Clients taking lithium carbonate should be taught to increase their fluid intake and to maintain normal intake of sodium. Concurrent use of any of the remaining medications will not increase the risk of lithium toxicity.
Question 28Correct answer is D
When providing family therapy, the nurse analyzes the functioning of healthy family systems. Which situations would not increase stress on a healthy family system?
An adolescent’s going away to college
The birth of a child
The death of a grandparent
Parental disagreement
Question 28 Explanation: In a functional family, parents typically do not agree on all issues and problems. Open discussion of thoughts and feeling is healthy, and parental disagreement should not cause system stress. The remaining answer choices are life transitions that are expected to increase family stress.
Question 29Correct answer is A
A client taking the monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) antidepressant isocarboxazid (Marplan) is instructed by the nurse to avoid which foods and beverages?
Aged cheese and red wine
Milk and green, leaf vegetables
Carbonated beverages and tomato products
Lean red meats and fruit juices
Question 29 Explanation: Aged cheese and red wines contain the substance tyramine which, when taken with an MAOI, can precipitate a hypertensive crisis. The other foods and beverages do not contain significant amounts of tyramine and, therefore, are not restricted.
Question 30Correct answer is C
Prior to administering chlorpromazine (Thorazine) to an agitated client, the nurse should:
Assess skin color and sclera
Assess the radial pulse
Take the client’s blood pressure
Ask the client to void
Question 30 Explanation: Because chlorpromazine (Thorazine) can cause a significant hypotensive effect (and possible client injury), the nurse must assess the client’s blood pressure (lying, sitting, and standing) before administering this drug. If the client had taken the drug previously, the nurse would also need to assess the skin color and sclera for signs of jaundice, a possible drug side affect; however, based on the information given here, there is no evidence that the client has received chlorpromazine before. Although the drug can cause urine retention, asking the client to avoid will not alter this anticholinergic effect.
Question 31Correct answer is B
The nurse understands that electroconvulsive therapy is primary used in psychiatric care for the treatment of:
Anxiety disorders.
Depression.
Mania.
Schizophrenia.
Question 31 Explanation: The onset of action of the SSRI antidepressant paroxetine occurs around 3 to 4 weeks after drug therapy begins. Therefore, a client will seldom notice improvement before this time. Continuing to take the drug is important for this client.
Question 32Correct answer is B
A client taking the MAOI phenelzine (Nardil) tells the nurse that he routinely takes all of the medications listed below. Which medication would cause the nurse to express concern and therefore initiate further teaching?
Acetaminophen (Tylenol)
Diphenhydramine (Benadryl)
Furosemide (Lasix)
Isosorbide dinitrate (Isordil)
Question 32 Explanation: Over-the-counter medications used for allergies and cold symptoms are contraindicated because they will increase the sympathomimetic effects of MAOIs, possibly causing a hypertensive crisis. None of the remaining medications will increase the sympathomimetic response and, therefore, are not contraindicated.
Question 33Correct answer is C
The nurse is administering a psychotropic drug to an elderly client who has history of benign prostatic hypertrophy. It is most important for the nurse to teach this client to:
Add fiber to his diet.
Exercise on a regular basis.
Report incomplete bladder emptying.
Take the prescribed dose at bedtime.
Question 33 Explanation: Urinary retention is a common anticholinergic side effect of psychotic medications, and the client with benign prostatic hypertrophy would have increased risk for this problem. Adding fiber to one’s diet and exercising regularly are measures to counteract another anticholinergic effect, constipation. Depending on the specific medication and how it is prescribed, taking the medication at night may or may not be important. However, it would have nothing to do with urinary retention in this client.
Question 34Correct answer is B
The nurse correctly teaches a client taking the benzodiazepine oxazepam (Serax) to avoid excessive intake of:
Cheese
Coffee
Sugar
Shellfish
Question 34 Explanation: Coffee contains caffeine, which has a stimulating effect on the central nervous system that will counteract the effect of the antianxiety medication oxazepam. None of the remaining foods is contraindicated.
Question 35Correct answer is B
The nurse provides a referral to Alcoholics Anonymous to a client who describes a 20-year history of alcohol abuse. The primary function of this group is to:
Encourage the use of a 12-step program.
Help members maintain sobriety.
Provide fellowship among members.
Teach positive coping mechanisms.
Question 35 Explanation: The primary purpose of Alcoholics Anonymous is to help members achieve and maintain sobriety. Although each of the remaining answer choices may be an outcome of attendance at Alcoholics Anonymous, the primary purpose is directed toward sobriety of members.
Question 36Correct answer is C
Which client outcome is most appropriately achieved in a community approach setting in psychiatric nursing?
The client performs activities of daily living and learns about crafts.
The client’s is able to prevent aggressive behavior and monitors his use of medications.
The client demonstrates self-reliance and social adaptation.
The client experience experiences anxiety relief and learns about his symptoms.
Question 36 Explanation: A therapeutic community is designed to help individuals assume responsibility for themselves, to learn how to respect and communicate with others, and to interact in a positive manner. The remaining answer choices may be outcomes of psychiatric treatment, but the use of a therapeutic community approach is concerned with promotion of self-reliance and cooperative adaptation to being with others.
Question 37Correct answer is D
A client with panic disorder experiences an acute attack while the nurse is completing an admission assessment. List the following interventions according to their level of priority. a. Remain with the client. b. Encourage physical activity. c. Encourage low, deep breathing. d. Reduce external stimuli. e. Teach coping measures.
ABCDE
ADBCE
ACDBE
ADCBE
Question 37 Explanation: The nurse should remain with the client to provide support and promote safety. Reducing external stimuli, including dimming lights and avoiding crowded areas, will help decrease anxiety. Encouraging the client to use slow, deep breathing will help promote the body’s relaxation response, thereby interrupting stimulation from the autonomic nervous system. Encouraging physical activity will help him to release energy resulting from the heightened anxiety state; this should be done only after the client has brought his breathing under control. Teaching coping measures will help the client learn to handle anxiety; however, this can only be accomplished when the client’s panic has dissipated and he is better able to focus.
Question 38Correct answer is C
The doctor has prescribed haloperidol (Haldol) 2.5 mg. I.M. for an agitated client. The medication is labeled haloperidol 10 mg/2 ml. The nurse prepares the correct dose by drawing up how many milliliters in the syringe?
0.3
0.4
0.5
0.6
Question 38 Explanation: Set up the problem as follows: 2.5mg/10mg = Xml/2ml X=0.5ml
Question 39Correct answer is C
The nurse enters the room of a client with a cognitive impairment disorder and asks what day of the week it is: what the date, month, and year are; and where the client is. The nurse is attempting to assess:
Confabulation
Delirium
Orientation
Perseveration
Question 39 Explanation: The initial, most basic assessment of a client with cognitive impairment involves determining his level of orientation (awareness of time, place, and person). The nurse may also assess for confabulation and perseveration in a client with cognitive impairment; but the questions in this situation would not elicit the symptom response. Delirium is a type of cognitive impairment; however, other symptoms are necessary to establish this diagnosis.
Question 40Correct answer is D
Which of the following will the nurse use when communicating with a client who has a cognitive impairment?
Complete explanations with multiple details
Picture or gestures instead of words
Stimulating words and phrases to capture the client’s attention
Short words and simple sentences
Question 40 Explanation: Short words and simple sentence minimize client confusion and enhance communication. Complete explanations with multiple details and stimulating words and phrases would increase confusion in a client with short attention span and difficulty with comprehension. Although pictures and gestures may be helpful, they would not substitute for verbal communication.
Question 41Correct answer is D
A 75-year-old client has dementia of the Alzheimer’s type and confabulates. The nurse understands that this client:
Denies confusion by being jovial.
Pretends to be someone else.
Rationalizes various behaviors.
Fills in memory gaps with fantasy.
Question 41 Explanation: Confabulation is a communication device used by patients with dementia to compensate for memory gaps. The remaining answer choices are incorrect.
Question 42Correct answer is C
An elderly client with Alzheimer’s disease becomes agitated and combative when a nurse approaches to help with morning care. The most appropriate nursing intervention in this situation would be to:
Tell the client family that it is time to get dressed.
Obtain assistance to restrain the client for safety.
Remain calm and talk quietly to the client.
Call the doctor and request an order for sedation.
Question 42 Explanation: Maintaining a calm approach when intervening with an agitated client is extremely important. Telling the client firmly that it is time to get dressed may increase his agitation, especially if the nurse touches him. Restraints are a last resort to ensure client safety and are inappropriate in this situation. Sedation should be avoided, if possible, because it will interfere with CNS functioning and may contribute to the client’s confusion.
Question 43Correct answer is C
In clients with a cognitive impairment disorder, the phenomenon of increased confusion in the early evening hours is called:
Aphasia
Agnosia
Sundowning
Confabulation
Question 43 Explanation: Sundowning is a common phenomenon that occurs after daylight hours in a client with a cognitive impairment disorder. The other options are incorrect responses, although all may be seen in this client.
Question 44 Correct answer is D
Which of the following outcome criteria is appropriate for the client with dementia?
The client will return to an adequate level of self-functioning.
The client will learn new coping mechanisms to handle anxiety.
The client will seek out resources in the community for support.
The client will follow an establishing schedule for activities of daily living.
Question 44 Explanation: Following established activity schedules is a realistic expectation for clients with dementia. All of the remaining outcome statements require a higher level of cognitive ability than can be realistically expected of clients with this disorder.
Question 45 Correct answer is C
The school guidance counselor refers a family with an 8-year-old child to the mental health clinic because of the child’s frequent fighting in school and truancy. Which of the following data would be a priority to the nurse doing the initial family assessment?
The child’s performance in school
Family education and work history
The family’s perception of the current problem
The teacher’s attempts to solve the problem
Question 45 Explanation: The family’s perception of the problem is essential because change in any one part of a family system affects all other parts and the system as a whole. Each member of the family has been affected by the current problems related to the school system and the nurse would be interested in the data. The child’s performance in school and the teacher’s attempts to solve the problem are relevant and may be assessed; however, priority would be given to the family’s perception of the problem. The family education and work history may be relevant, but are not a priority.
Question 46 Correct answer is B
The parents of a young man with schizophrenia express feelings of responsibility and guilt for their son’s problems. How can the nurse best educate the family?
Acknowledge the parent’s responsibility.
Explain the biological nature of schizophrenia.
Refer the family to a support group.
Teach the parents various ways they must change.
Question 46 Explanation: The parents are feeling responsible and this inappropriate self-blame can be limited by supplying them with the facts about the biologic basis of schizophrenia. Acknowledging the patient’s responsibility is neither accurate nor helpful to the parents and would only reinforce their feelings of guilt. Support groups are useful; however, the nurse needs to handle the parents’ self-blame directly instead of making a referral for this problem. Teaching the parents various ways to change would reinforce the parental assumption of blame; although parents can learn about schizophrenia and what is helpful and not helpful, the approach suggested in this option implies the parents’ behavior is at fault.
Question 47 Correct answer is A
The nurse collecting family assessment data asks. “Who is in your family and where do they live?” which of the following is the nurse attempting o identify?
Boundaries
Ethnicity
Relationships
Triangles
Question 47 Explanation: Family boundaries are parameters that define who is inside and outside the system. The best method of obtaining this information is asking the family directly who they consider to be members. The question asked by the nurse would not elicit information about the family’s ethnicity or culture, nor does it address the nature of the family relationship.
Question 48 Correct answer is B
According to the family systems theory, which of the following best describes the process of differentiation?
Cooperative action among members of the family
Development of autonomy within the family
Incongruent messages wherein the recipient is a victim
Maintenance of system continuity or equilibrium
Question 48 Explanation: Differentiation is the process of becoming an individual developing autonomy while staying in contact with the family system. Cooperative action among family members does not refer to differentiation, although individuals who have a high level of differentiation would be able to accomplish cooperative action. Incongruent messages in which the recipient is a victim describe double-bind communication. Maintenance of system continuity or equilibrium is homeostasis.
Question 49 Correct answer is D
The nurse is interacting with a family consisting of a mother, a father, and a hospitalized adolescent who has a diagnosis of alcohol abuse. The nurse analyzes the situation and agrees with the adolescent’s view about family rules. Which intervention is most appropriate?
The nurse should align with the adolescent, who is the family scapegoat.
The nurse should encourage the parents to adopt more realistic rules.
The nurse should encourage the adolescent to comply with parental rules.
The nurse should remain objective and encourage mutual negotiation of issues.
Question 49 Explanation: The nurse who wishes to be helpful to the entire family must remain neutral. Taking sides in a conflict situation in a family will not encourage negotiation, which is important for problem resolution. If the nurse aligned with the adolescent, then the nurse would be blaming the parents for the child’s current problem; this would not help the family’s situation. Learning to negotiate conflict is a function of a healthy family. Encouraging the parents to adopt more realistic rules or the adolescent to comply with parental rules does not give the family an opportunity to try to resolve problems on their own.
Question 50 Correct answer is C
A 16-year-old girl has returned home following hospitalization for treatment of anorexia nervosa. The parents tell the family nurse performing a home visit that their child has always done everything to please them and they cannot understand her current stubbornness about eating. The nurse analyzes the family situation and determines it is characteristic of which relationship style?
Differentiation
Disengagement
Enmeshment
Scapegoating
Question 50 Explanation: Enmeshment is a fusion or over involvement among family members whereby the expectation exists that all members think and act alike. The child who always acts to please her parents is an example of how enmeshment affects development in many cases, a child who develops anorexia nervosa exerts control only in the area of eating behavior. The remaining options are not appropriate to the situation described.

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