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Psychopharmalogical Approaches to Treat Psychopathology

Assignment: Assessing and Treating Patients With ADHD

Not only do children and adults have different presentations for ADHD, but males and females may also have vastly different clinical presentations. Different people may also respond to medication therapies differently. For example, some ADHD medications may cause children to experience stomach pain, while others can be highly addictive for adults. In your role, as a psychiatric nurse practitioner, you must perform careful assessments and weigh the risks and benefits of medication therapies for patients across the life span. For this Assignment, you consider how you might assess and treat patients presenting with ADHD.

To prepare for this Assignment:

· Review this week’s Learning Resources, including the Medication Resources indicated for this week.

· Reflect on the psychopharmacologic treatments you might recommend for the assessment and treatment of patients with ADHD.

The Assignment: 5 pages

Examine Case Study: A Young Caucasian Girl with ADHD. You will be asked to make three decisions concerning the medication to prescribe to this patient. Be sure to consider factors that might impact the patient’s pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes.

At each decision point, you should evaluate all options before selecting your decision and moving throughout the exercise. Before you make your decision, make sure that you have researched each option and that you evaluate the decision that you will select. Be sure to research each option using the primary literature.

Introduction to the case (1 page)

· Briefly explain and summarize the case for this Assignment. Be sure to include the specific patient factors that may impact your decision making when prescribing medication for this patient.

Decision #1 (1 page)

· Which decision did you select?

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Decision #2 (1 page)

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Decision #3 (1 page)

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Conclusion (1 page)

· Summarize your recommendations on the treatment options you selected for this patient. Be sure to justify your recommendations and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

·

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

Katie is an 8 year old Caucasian female who is brought to your office today by her mother & father. They report that they were referred to you by their primary care provider after seeking her advice because Katie’s teacher suggested that she may have ADHD. Katie’s parents reported that their PCP felt that she should be evaluated by psychiatry to determine whether or not she has this condition.

The parents give the PMHNP a copy of a form titled “Conner’s Teacher Rating Scale-Revised”. This scale was filled out by Katie’s teacher and sent home to the parents so that they could share it with their family primary care provider. According to the scoring provided by her teacher, Katie is inattentive, easily distracted, forgets things she already learned, is poor in spelling, reading, and arithmetic. Her attention span is short, and she is noted to only pay attention to things she is interested in. The teacher opined that she lacks interest in school work and is easily distracted. Katie is also noted to start things but never finish them, and seldom follows through on instructions and fails to finish her school work.

Katie’s parents actively deny that Katie has ADHD. “She would be running around like a wild person if she had ADHD” reports her mother. “She is never defiant or has temper outburst” adds her father.

SUBJECTIVE

Katie reports that she doesn’t know what the “big deal” is. She states that school is “OK”- her favorite subjects are “art” and “recess.” She states that she finds her other subjects boring, and sometimes hard because she feels “lost”. She admits that her mind does wander during class to things that she thinks of as more fun. “Sometimes” Katie reports “I will just be thinking about nothing and the teacher will call my name and I don’t know what they were talking about.”

Katie reports that her home life is just fine. She reports that she loves her parents and that they are very good and kind to her. Denies any abuse, denies bullying at school. Offers no other concerns at this time.

MENTAL STATUS EXAM

The client is an 8 year old Caucasian female who appears appropriately developed for her age. Her speech is clear, coherent, and logical. She is appropriately oriented to person, place, time, and event. She is dressed appropriately for the weather and time of year. She demonstrates no noteworthy mannerisms, gestures, or tics. Self-reported mood is euthymic. Affect is bright. Katie denies visual or auditory hallucinations, no delusional or paranoid thought processes readily appreciated. Attention and concentration are grossly intact based on Katie’s attending to the clinical interview and her ability to count backwards from 100 by serial 2’s and 5’s. Insight and judgment appear age appropriate. Katie denies any suicidal or homicidal ideation.

Diagnosis: Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, predominantly inattentive presentation

RESOURCES

§ Conners, C. K., Sitarenios, G., Parker, J. D. A., & Epstein, J. N. (1998). Revision and restandardization of the Conners’ Teacher Rating Scale (CTRS-R): Factors, structure, reliability, and criterion validity. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 26, 279-291.

Decision Point One

Select what the PMHNP should do:

Begin Wellbutrin (bupropion) XL 150 mg orally daily

Begin Intuniv extended release 1 mg orally at BEDTIME

Begin Ritalin (methylphenidate) chewable tablets 10 mg orally in the MORNING- I will choose this one:

RESULTS OF DECISION POINT ONE

Client returns to clinic in four weeks

Katie’s parents report that they spoke with Katie’s teacher who notices that her symptoms are much better in the morning, which has resulted in improvement in her overall academic performance. However, by the afternoon, Katie is “staring off into space” and “daydreaming” again

Katie’s parents are very concerned, however, because Katie reported that her “heart felt funny.” You obtain a pulse rate and find that Katie’s heart is beating about 130 beats per minute

Decision Point Two

Select what the PMHNP should do next:

Continue same dose of Ritalin and re-evaluate in 4 weeks

Change to Ritalin LA 20 mg orally daily in the MORNING- I will choose this one

Discontinue Ritalin and begin Adderall XR 15 mg orally daily

RESULTS OF DECISION POINT TWO

·  Client returns to clinic in four weeks

·  Katie’s academic performance is still improved, and the switch to the LA preparation is lasting Katie throughout the school day

·  Katie’s reports of her heart feeling “funny” have gone away. Pulse was 92 during today’s office visit


Decision Point Three

Select what the PMHNP should do next:

Maintain current dose of Ritalin LA and reevaluate in 4 weeks- I will choose this option

Increase Ritalin LA to 30 mg orally daily

Obtain EKG based on current heart rate

Guidance to Student

At this point, Katie’s symptoms are well controlled (her attention is sustained throughout the school day) and her side effects have gone away following change to a long-acting preparation. There is no indication at this point that the dose should be increased as it is always advisable to use the lowest effective dose of stimulant medication. Katie’s heart rate is appropriate for an 8 year old girl and an EKG would not be indicated based on her heart rate.

Psychopharmalogical Approaches to Treat Psychopathology

Assignment: Assessing and Treating Patients with Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is a unique disorder that causes shifts in mood and energy, which results in depression and mania for patients. Proper diagnosis of this disorder is often a challenge for two reasons: 1) patients often present as depressive or manic but may have both; and 2) many symptoms of bipolar disorder are similar to other disorders. Misdiagnosis is common, making it essential for you to have a deep understanding of the disorder’s pathophysiology. For this Assignment, as you examine the patient case study in this week’s Learning Resources, consider how you might assess and treat patients presenting with bipolar disorder.

To prepare for this Assignment:

· Review this week’s Learning Resources, including the Medication Resources indicated for this week.

· Reflect on the psychopharmacologic treatments you might recommend for the assessment and treatment of patients requiring bipolar therapy.

The Assignment: 5 pages

Examine Case Study: An Asian American Woman. Diagnosis-Bipolar Disorder. You will be asked to make three decisions concerning the medication to prescribe to this patient. Be sure to consider factors that might impact the patient’s pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes.

At each decision point, you should evaluate all options before selecting your decision and moving throughout the exercise. Before you make your decision, make sure that you have researched each option and that you evaluate the decision that you will select. Be sure to research each option using the primary literature.

Introduction to the case (1 page)

· Briefly explain and summarize the case for this Assignment. Be sure to include the specific patient factors that may impact your decision making when prescribing medication for this patient.

Decision #1 (1 page)

· Which decision did you select?

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Decision #2 (1 page)

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Decision #3 (1 page)

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Conclusion (1 page)

· Summarize your recommendations on the treatment options you selected for this patient. Be sure to justify your recommendations and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.


Note:

 Support your rationale with a minimum of five academic resources. While you may use the course text to support your rationale, it will not count toward the resource requirement. You should be utilizing the primary and secondary literature.

Reminder: The College of Nursing requires that all papers submitted include a title page, introduction, summary, and references. The Sample Paper provided at the Walden Writing Center provides an example of those required elements (available at 

https://academicguides.waldenu.edu/writingcenter/templates/general#s-lg-box-20293632). All papers submitted must use this formatting.

Background Information

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

The client is a 26-year-old woman of Korean descent who presents to her first appointment following a 21-day hospitalization for onset of acute mania. She was diagnosed with bipolar I disorder.

Upon arrival in your office, she is quite “busy,” playing with things on your desk and shifting from side to side in her chair. She informs you that “they said I was bipolar, I don’t believe that, do you? I just like to talk, and dance, and sing. Did I tell you that I liked to cook?”

She weights 110 lbs. and is 5’ 5”

SUBJECTIVE

Patient reports “fantastic” mood. Reports that she sleeps about 5 hours/night to which she adds “I hate sleep, it’s no fun.”

You reviewed her hospital records and find that she has been medically worked up by a physician who reported her to be in overall good health. Lab studies were all within normal limits. You find that the patient had genetic testing in the hospital (specifically GeneSight testing) as none of the medications that they were treating her with seemed to work.

Genetic testing reveals that she is positive for CYP2D6*10 allele.

Patient did well enough on Lithium to be discharged from the hospital but admits she has not been taking it as prescribed. When further questioned on the subject, she provides no additional details.

MENTAL STATUS EXAM

The patient is alert, oriented to person, place, time, and event. She is dressed quite oddly- wearing what appears to be an evening gown to her appointment. Speech is rapid, pressured, tangential. Self-reported mood is euthymic. Affect broad. Patient denies visual or auditory hallucinations, no overt delusional or paranoid thought processes readily apparent. Judgment is grossly intact, but insight is clearly impaired. She is currently denying suicidal or homicidal ideation.

The Young Mania Rating Scale (YMRS) score is 22

RESOURCES

§ Chen, R., Wang, H., Shi, J., Shen, K., & Hu, P. (2015). Cytochrome P450 2D6 genotype affects the pharmacokinetics of controlled-release paroxetine in healthy Chinese subjects: comparison of traditional phenotype and activity score systems. European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, 71(7), 835-841. doi:10.1007/s00228-015-1855-6

Decision Point One

Select what the PMHNP should do:

Begin Lithium 300 mg orally BID- I will choose this decision

Begin Risperdal 1 mg orally BID

Begin Seroquel XR 300 mg orally at HS


RESULTS OF DECISION POINT ONE

·  Client returns to clinic in four weeks

·  Client informs the PMHNP that she has been taking her drug “off and on” only when she “feels like she needs it”

·  Today’s presentation is similar to the first day you met her

Decision Point Two

Select what the PMHNP should do next:

Increase Lithium to 450 mg orally BID

Assess rationale for non-compliance to elicit reason for non-compliance and educate client re: drug effects, and pharmacology

Switch to Depakote ER 500 mg orally at HS- I will choose this one


RESULTS OF DECISION POINT TWO:

Client returns to clinic in four weeks

Client reports that she has been compliant, and you notice a marked reduction in manic symptoms. Young Mania Rating Scale was 11 (50% reduction from first office visit)

Client reports that she has gained 6 pounds over the last 4 weeks and wants to stop the medication because of this.

Decision Point Three

Select what the PMHNP should do next:

Educate client regarding diet/weight loss and continue client on the same drug/dose

Decrease Depakote ER to 250 mg orally at HS

Switch medication to Zyprexa 15 mg orally daily at HS


Results of decision point three:

Educate client regarding diet/weight loss and continue client on the same drug/dose

Guidance to Student

The PMHNP should begin by educating the client regarding weight loss/and importance of diet/exercise while taking Depakote which can cause weight gain. Decreasing the dose of Depakote would not be appropriate as she still has symptoms and decreasing dose of Depakote may result in some weight loss, it may result in a return of manic symptoms. The PMHNP can switch to Zyprexa but if weight gain is the issue, then this will be compounded by Zyprexa which is associated with significant weight gain (up to 20 kg over a 24-month period).

Psychopharmalogical Approaches to Treat Psychopathology

Assignment: Assessing and Treating Pediatric Patients With Mood Disorders

When pediatric patients present with mood disorders, the process of assessing, diagnosing, and treating them can be quite complex. Children not only present with different signs and symptoms than adult patients with the same disorders, they also metabolize medications much differently. Yet, there may be times when the same psychopharmacologic treatments may be used in both pediatric and adult cases with major depressive disorders. As a result, psychiatric nurse practitioners must exercise caution when prescribing psychotropic medications to these patients. For this Assignment, as you examine the patient case study in this week’s Learning Resources, consider how you might assess and treat pediatric patients presenting with mood disorders.

To prepare for this Assignment:

· Review this week’s Learning Resources, including the Medication Resources indicated for this week.

· Reflect on the psychopharmacologic treatments you might recommend for the assessment and treatment of pediatric patients requiring antidepressant therapy.

The Assignment: 5 pages

Examine Case Study: An African American Child Suffering From Depression. You will be asked to make three decisions concerning the medication to prescribe to this patient. Be sure to consider factors that might impact the patient’s pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes.

At each decision point, you should evaluate all options before selecting your decision and moving throughout the exercise. Before you make your decision, make sure that you have researched each option and that you evaluate the decision that you will select. Be sure to research each option using the primary literature.

Introduction to the case (1 page)

· Briefly explain and summarize the case for this Assignment. Be sure to include the specific patient factors that may impact your decision making when prescribing medication for this patient.

Decision #1 (1 page)

· Which decision did you select?

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Decision #2 (1 page)

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Decision #3 (1 page)

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Conclusion (1 page)

Summarize your recommendations on the treatment options you selected for this patient. Be sure to justify your recommendations and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.


Note:

 Support your rationale with a minimum of five academic resources. While you may use the course text to support your rationale, it will not count toward the resource requirement. You should be utilizing the primary and secondary literature.

Reminder : The College of Nursing requires that all papers submitted include a title page, introduction, summary, and references.

Background Information

The client is an 8-year-old African American male who arrives at the ER with his mother. He is exhibiting signs of depression.

Client complained of feeling “sad”
Mother reports that teacher said child is withdrawn from peers in class
Mother notes decreased appetite and occasional periods of irritation
Client reached all developmental landmarks at appropriate ages
Physical exam unremarkable
Laboratory studies WNL

Client referred to psychiatry evaluation

Client seen by psychiatric nurse practitioner

Alert & oriented X 3, speech clear, coherent, goal directed, spontaneous. Self-reported mood is “sad”. Affect somewhat blunted, but child smiled appropriately at various points throughout the clinical interview. He denies visual or auditory hallucinations. No delusional or paranoid thought processes noted. Judgment and insight appear to be age-appropriate. He is not endorsing active suicidal ideation, but does admit that he often thinks about himself being dead and what it would be like to be dead.

You administer the Children’s Depression Rating Scale, obtaining a score of 30 (indicating significant depression)

RESOURCES

§ Poznanski, E., & Mokros, H. (1996). Child Depression Rating Scale–Revised. Los Angeles, CA: Western Psychological Services.

Decision Point One

Select what you should do:
Begin Zoloft 25 mg orally daily-I will choose this one.
Begin Paxil 10 mg orally daily
Begin Wellbutrin 75 mg orally BID

RESULTS OF DECISION POINT ONE

1. Client returns to clinic in four weeks

2. Slight increase in mood

3. No HAM-D results

No adverse events reported

DECISION POINT TWO

Select what PMHNP should do next:

Increase dose to 37.5 mg orally daily

Increase dose to 50 mg orally daily- I will choose this one

Change to Prozac 10 mg orally daily.

RESULTS OF DECISION POINT TWO

1.Client returns to clinic in 4 weeks

2. Depressive symptoms decreased by 50%. Client tolerating well.

DECISION POINT THREE

Select what PMHNP should do next:

1. Maintain current dose- I WILL CHOOOSE THIS ONE.

2. Increase dose to 75 mg orally daily

3. Change to a SNRI

· Results of decision point three:

· Guidance to Student
At this point, sufficient symptom reduction has been achieved. It is considered a full response to therapy when symptoms are reduced by 50% or more on the HAM-D. Do not confuse this with full symptom resolution which would be a 100% reduction in symptoms as measured on the HAM-D. It would be in the best interest of the patient to continue with the current dose of medication and re-assess in 4 weeks. Remember, any change in dose resets the “clock” for a full assessment of therapy efficacy. Waiting an additional 4 weeks (8 weeks total from dose change) would allow additional benefit to be recognized. An increase in dose would not be warranted at this point in time as it would lead to an increased potential for adverse events. This could fracture the therapeutic alliance created with your patient and lead to loss to follow-up, loss of symptom control, and other negative consequences to the patient. There is no indication that the drug therapy should be changed to an SNRI at this point as the client is clearly responding to this therapy.

Psychopharmalogical Approaches to Treat Psychopathology

Assignment: Assessing and Treating Patients with Anxiety Disorders

Common symptoms of anxiety disorders include chest pains, shortness of breath, and other physical symptoms that may be mistaken for a heart attack or other physical ailment. These manifestations often prompt patients to seek care from their primary care providers or emergency departments. Once it is determined that there is no organic basis for these symptoms, patients are typically referred to a psychiatric mental health practitioner for anxiolytic therapy. For this Assignment, as you examine the patient case study in this week’s Learning Resources, consider how you might assess and treat patients presenting with anxiety disorders.

To prepare for this Assignment:

· Review this week’s Learning Resources, including the Medication Resources indicated for this week.

· Reflect on the psychopharmacologic treatments you might recommend for the assessment and treatment of patients requiring anxiolytic therapy.

The Assignment: 5 pages

Examine Case Study: A Middle-Aged Caucasian Man With Anxiety. You will be asked to make three decisions concerning the medication to prescribe to this patient. Be sure to consider factors that might impact the patient’s pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes.

At each decision point, you should evaluate all options before selecting your decision and moving throughout the exercise. Before you make your decision, make sure that you have researched each option and that you evaluate the decision that you will select. Be sure to research each option using the primary literature.

Introduction to the case (1 page)

· Briefly explain and summarize the case for this Assignment. Be sure to include the specific patient factors that may impact your decision making when prescribing medication for this patient.

Decision #1 (1 page)

· Which decision did you select?

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Decision #2 (1 page)

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Decision #3 (1 page)

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Conclusion (1 page)

· Summarize your recommendations on the treatment options you selected for this patient. Be sure to justify your recommendations and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.


Note:

 Support your rationale with a minimum of five academic resources. While you may use the course text to support your rationale, it will not count toward the resource requirement. You should be utilizing the primary and secondary literature.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

The client is a 46-year-old white male who works as a welder at a local steel fabrication factory. He presents today after being referred by his PCP after a trip to the emergency room in which he felt he was having a heart attack. He stated that he felt chest tightness, shortness of breath, and feeling of impending doom. He does have some mild hypertension (which is treated with low sodium diet) and is about 15 lbs. overweight. He had his tonsils removed when he was 8 years old, but his medical history since that time has been unremarkable. Myocardial infarction was ruled out in the ER and his EKG was normal. Remainder of physical exam was WNL.

He admits that he still has problems with tightness in the chest and episodes of shortness of breath- he now terms these “anxiety attacks.” He will also report occasional feelings of impending doom, and the need to “run” or “escape” from wherever he is at.

In your office, he confesses to occasional use of ETOH to combat worries about work. He admits to consuming about 3-4 beers/night. Although he is single, he is attempting to care for aging parents in his home. He reports that the management at his place of employment is harsh, and he fears for his job. You administer the HAM-A, which yields a score of 26.

Client has never been on any type of psychotropic medication.

MENTAL STATUS EXAM

The client is alert, oriented to person, place, time, and event. He is appropriately dressed. Speech is clear, coherent, and goal-directed. Client’s self-reported mood is “bleh” and he does endorse feeling “nervous”. Affect is somewhat blunted, but does brighten several times throughout the clinical interview. Affect broad. Client denies visual or auditory hallucinations, no overt delusional or paranoid thought processes readily apparent. Judgment is grossly intact, as is insight. He denies suicidal or homicidal ideation.

You administer the Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale (HAM-A) which yields a score of 26.

Diagnosis: Generalized anxiety disorder

RESOURCES

§ Hamilton, M. (1959). Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale. Psyctests, doi:10.1037/t02824-0

Decision Point One

Select what you should do:


Begin Paxil 10 mg po daily--I will select this one

Begin Imipramine 25 mg po BID

Begin Buspirone 10 mg po BID

RESULTS OF DECISION POINT ONE

·  Client returns to clinic in four weeks

·  Client informs you that he has no tightness in chest, or shortness of breath

·  Client states that he noticed decreased worries about work over the past 4 or 5 days

·  HAM-A score has decreased to 18 (partial response)

Decision Point Two

Select what you should do next:

Increase dose to 20 mg po daily-I will choose this one

Increase dose to 40 mg po daily

No change in drug/dose at this time

RESULTS OF DECISION POINT TWO

Client returns to clinic in four weeks

Client reports an even further reduction in his symptoms

HAM-A score has now decreased to 10. At this point- continue current dose (61% reduction in symptoms)

Decision Point Three

Select what you should do next:

Maintain current dose—I will choose this one

Increase to 30 mg po daily

Add augmentation agent such as BuSpar (buspirone)

Guidance to Student
At this point, it may be appropriate to continue client at the current dose. It is clear that the client is having a good response (as evidenced by greater than a 50% reduction in symptoms) and the client is currently not experiencing any side effects, the current dose can be maintained for 12 weeks to evaluate full effect of drug. Increasing drug at this point may yield a further decrease in symptoms, but may also increase the risk of side effects. This is a decision that you should discuss with the client. Nothing in the client’s case tells us that we should consider adding an augmentation agent at this point as the client is demonstrating response to the drug. Avoid polypharmacy unless symptoms cannot be managed by a single drug.

Psychopharmalogical Approaches to Treat Psychopathology

Assignment 2: Assessing and Treating Patients With Sleep/Wake Disorders

Sleep disorders are conditions that result in changes in an individual’s pattern of sleep (Mayo Clinic, 2020). Not surprisingly, a sleep disorder can affect an individual’s overall health, safety, and quality of life. Psychiatric nurse practitioners can treat sleep disorders with psychopharmacologic treatments, however, many of these drugs can have negative effects on other aspects of a patient’s health and well-being. Additionally, while psychopharmacologic treatments may be able to address issues with sleep, they can also exert potential challenges with waking patterns. Thus, it is important for the psychiatric nurse practitioner to carefully evaluate the best psychopharmacologic treatments for patients that present with sleep/wake disorders.

Reference: Mayo Clinic. (2020). Sleep disorders. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/sleep-disorders/symptoms-causes/syc-20354018

To prepare for this Assignment:

· Review this week’s Learning Resources, including the Medication Resources indicated for this week.

· Reflect on the psychopharmacologic treatments you might recommend for the assessment and treatment of patients with sleep/wake disorders.

The Assignment: 5 pages

Examine Case Study: Pharmacologic Approaches to the Treatment of Insomnia in a Younger Adult. You will be asked to make three decisions concerning the medication to prescribe to this patient. Be sure to consider factors that might impact the patient’s pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes.

At each decision point, you should evaluate all options before selecting your decision and moving throughout the exercise. Before you make your decision, make sure that you have researched each option and that you evaluate the decision that you will select. Be sure to research each option using the primary literature.

Introduction to the case (1 page)

· Briefly explain and summarize the case for this Assignment. Be sure to include the specific patient factors that may impact your decision making when prescribing medication for this patient.

Decision #1 (1 page)

· Which decision did you select?

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Decision #2 (1 page)

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Decision #3 (1 page)

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Conclusion (1 page)

· Summarize your recommendations on the treatment options you selected for this patient. Be sure to justify your recommendations and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.


Note:

 Support your rationale with a minimum of five academic resources. While you may use the course text to support your rationale, it will not count toward the resource requirement. You should be utilizing the primary and secondary literature.

BACKGROUND

This week, we examine a 31-year-old male who presents to the office with a chief complaint of insomnia.

SUBJECTIVE

Patient is a 31-year-old male. He states that his insomnia has gotten progressively worse over the past 6 months. Per the patient, he has never been a “great sleeper” but is now having difficulty both falling asleep and staying asleep at night. The problem began approximately 6 months ago after the sudden loss of his fiancé. The patient states this is affecting his ability to perform his job, which is a forklift operator at a local chemical company. The patient states he has used diphenhydramine in the past to sleep but does not like the way it makes him feel the morning after. He states he has fallen asleep on the job due to lack of sleep from the night before. The patient’s medical record from his previous physician states that he has a history of opiate abuse, which began after he broke his ankle in a skiing accident and was prescribed hydrocodone/apap (acetaminophen) for acute pain management. The patient has not received a prescription for an opiate analgesic in 4 years. The patient states recently he has been using alcohol to help him fall asleep, approximately four beers prior to bed.

MENTAL STATUS EXAM

The patient is alert and oriented to person, place, time, event. He makes good eye contact and is dressed appropriately for time of year. He denies auditory/visual hallucinations. Judgement, insight, and reality contact are all intact. Patient denies suicidal/homicidal ideation, and is future oriented.


Decision Point One

Select what you should do:

Zolpidem: 10 mg daily at bedtime

Trazodone 50 mg po at bedtime- I will choose this one

Hydroxyzine: 50 mg daily at bedtime

RESULTS OF DECISION POINT ONE

·  Patient returns to clinic in 2 weeks

·  Patient states medication works well but gives him an unpleasant side effect of an erection lasting approximately 15 minutes after waking

·  Patient states this makes it difficult to get ready for work or go downstairs and have coffee with his girlfriend and daughter in the morning

·  Patient denies auditory/visual hallucinations and is future oriented


Decision Point Two

Select what you should do next:

Explain that an erection lasting 15 minutes is not considered a priapism and should diminish over time, continue with current dose

Discontinue trazodone. Initiate therapy with suvorexant 10 mg daily at bedtime

Decrease trazodone to 25 mg daily at bedtime- I will choose this one

RESULTS OF DECISION POINT TWO

·  Patient returns to clinic in 2 weeks

·  Patient states trazodone is very effective for sleep

·  Patient states sometimes the 25 mg dosage isn’t quite enough to help him sleep through the night

·  Patient denies auditory/visual hallucinations and is future oriented


Decision Point Three

Select what you should do next:

Discontinue trazodone. Initiate therapy with ramelteon 8 mg nightly at bedtime. Follow up in 4 weeks

Continue dose. Encourage sleep hygiene. Follow up in 4 weeks- I will choose this one.

Discontinue trazodone. Initiate therapy with hydroxyzine 50 mg nightly at bedtime. Follow up in 4 weeks

Results

Guidance to Student

Since the patient is already showing a partial response from trazodone, it may not be prudent to switch therapy. A thorough sleep hygiene analysis should always be performed prior to initiation of pharmacotherapy as well as at reassessments. If you find the patient isn’t practicing proper sleep hygiene, you may continue the dose and encourage sleep hygiene. If the patient is practicing good sleep hygiene, you may consider discontinuing trazodone and initiating hydroxyzine. Although there are some negative side effects associated with hydroxyzine such as Xerostomia and Xerophthalmia, it is still a safer medication to prescribe than ramelteon.

Psychopharmalogical Approaches to Treat Psychopathology

Assignment: Assessing and Treating Patients With Psychosis and Schizophrenia

Psychosis and schizophrenia greatly impact the brain’s normal processes, which interfere with the ability to think clearly. When symptoms of these disorders are uncontrolled, patients may struggle to function in daily life. However, patients often thrive when properly diagnosed and treated under the close supervision of a psychiatric mental health practitioner. For this Assignment, as you examine the patient case study in this week’s Learning Resources, consider how you might assess and treat patients presenting with psychosis and schizophrenia.

To prepare for this Assignment:

· Review this week’s Learning Resources, including the Medication Resources indicated for this week.

· Reflect on the psychopharmacologic treatments you might recommend for the assessment and treatment of patients with schizophrenia-related psychoses.

The Assignment: 5 pages

Examine Case Study: Pakistani Woman With Delusional Thought Processes. You will be asked to make three decisions concerning the medication to prescribe to this patient. Be sure to consider factors that might impact the patient’s pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes.

At each decision point, you should evaluate all options before selecting your decision and moving throughout the exercise. Before you make your decision, make sure that you have researched each option and that you evaluate the decision that you will select. Be sure to research each option using the primary literature.

Introduction to the case (1 page)

· Briefly explain and summarize the case for this Assignment. Be sure to include the specific patient factors that may impact your decision making when prescribing medication for this patient.

Decision #1 (1 page)

· Which decision did you select?

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Decision #2 (1 page)

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Decision #3 (1 page)

· Why did you select this decision? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise? Be specific and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.

· What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision? Support your response with evidence and references to the Learning Resources (including the primary literature).

· Explain how ethical considerations may impact your treatment plan and communication with patients. Be specific and provide examples.

Conclusion (1 page)

· Summarize your recommendations on the treatment options you selected for this patient. Be sure to justify your recommendations and support your response with clinically relevant and patient-specific resources, including the primary literature.


Note:

 Support your rationale with a minimum of five academic resources. While you may use the course text to support your rationale, it will not count toward the resource requirement. You should be utilizing the primary and secondary literature.

Background Information

BACKGROUND

The client is a 34-year-old Pakistani female who moved to the United States in her late teens/early 20s. She is currently in an “arranged” marriage (her husband was selected for her when she was 9 years old). She presents following a 21-day hospitalization for what was diagnosed as “brief psychotic disorder.” She was given this diagnosis as her symptoms have persisted for less than 1 month.

Prior to admission, she was reporting visions of Allah, and over the course of a week, she believed that she was the prophet Mohammad. She believed that she would deliver the world from sin. Her husband became concerned about her behavior to the point that he was afraid of leaving their 4 children with her. One evening, she was “out of control,” which resulted in his calling the police and her subsequent admission to an inpatient psych unit.

During today’s assessment, she appears quite calm and insists that the entire incident was “blown out of proportion.” She denies that she believed herself to be the prophet Mohammad and states that her husband was just out to get her because he never loved her and wanted an “American wife” instead of her. She says she knows this because the television is telling her so.

She currently weighs 140 lbs., and she is 5’ 5.

SUBJECTIVE

Client reports that her mood is “good.” She denies auditory/visual hallucinations but believes that the television talks to her. She believes that Allah sends her messages through the TV. At times throughout the clinical interview, she becomes hostile towards you but then calms down.

A review of her hospital records shows that she received a medical workup from a physician, who reported her to be in overall good health. Lab studies were all within normal limits.

Client admits that she was tolerating her Risperdal well but stopped taking about a week after she got out of the hospital because she thinks her husband is going to poison her so that he can marry an American woman.

MENTAL STATUS EXAM

The client is alert and oriented to person, place, time, and event. She is dressed appropriately for the weather and time of year. She demonstrates no noteworthy mannerisms, gestures, or tics. Her speech is slow and, at times, interrupted by periods of silence. Self-reported mood is euthymic. Affect is constricted. Although the client denies visual or auditory hallucinations, she appears to be “listening” to something. Delusional and paranoid thought processes as described above. Insight and judgment are impaired. She is currently denying suicidal or homicidal ideation.

You administer the PANSS which reveals the following scores:

-40 for the positive symptoms scale

-20 for the negative symptom scale

-60 for general psychopathology scale

Diagnosis: Schizophrenia, paranoid type

RESOURCES

PANSS Scale. Available at: 
http://egret.psychol.cam.ac.uk/medicine/scales/PANSS

§ Kay, S. R., Fiszbein, A., & Opler, L. A. (1987). The Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS) for schizophrenia. Schizophrenia Bulletin, 13(2), 261–276. doi:10.1093/schbul/13.2.261


https://www.clozapinerems.com/CpmgClozapineUI/rems/pdf/resources/Clozapine_REMS_A_Guide_for_Healthcare_Providers.pdf

§ Clozapine REMS Program. (n.d.). Clozapine REMS: A guide for healthcare providers. Retrieved September 7, 2016, from 
https://www.clozapinerems.com/CpmgClozapineUI/rems/pdf/resources/Clozapine_REMS_A_Guide_for_Healthcare_Providers.pdf


http://www.ima.org.il/FilesUpload/IMAJ/0/40/20149.pdf

§ Paz, Z., Nalls, M., and Ziv, E. (2011). The genetics of benign neutropenia. Israel Medical Association Journal, 13(10), 625–629. Retrieved from 
http://www.ima.org.il/FilesUpload/IMAJ/0/40/20149.pdf

1. Decision Point One

Select what you should do:

Start Zyprexa (olanzapine) 10 mg orally at BEDTIME

Start Invega Sustenna 234 mg IM X1 followed by 156 mg IM on day 4 and monthly thereafter- I will choose this option

Start Abilify (aripiprazole) 10 mg orally at BEDTIME

Start Invega Sustenna 234 mg IM X1 followed by 156 mg IM on day 4 and monthly thereafter

RESULTS OF DECISION POINT ONE

·  Client returns to clinic in four weeks

·  A decrease in the PANSS score of 25% (in positive symtpoms) is noted at this visit

·  Client seems to be tolerating medication

·  Her husband has made sure she makes her appointments for injections (one thus far)

·  She has noted a 2-pound weight gain, but it does not seem to be an important point for her

·  She does, however, complain of injection-site pain, telling you that she has trouble sitting for a few hours after the injections and doesn’t like having to walk around for such a long period of time

2. Decision Point Two

Select what the PMHNP should do next:

Continue same made but instruct administering nurse to begin injections into the deltoid at this visit and moving forward- I will choose this option!

DC Invega Sustenna and start Haldol Decanoate (haloperidol decanoate ) 50 mg IM q2weeks with oral Haldol 5 mg BID for the next 3 months

Continue Invega Sustenna. Begin injections into the deltoid and add on Abilify Maintena 300 mg IM qmonthly with oral Abilify 10 mg in the MORNING for 2 weeks

Continue same made but instruct administering nurse to begin injections into the deltoid at this visit and moving forward

RESULTS OF DECISION POINT TWO

·  Client returns to clinic in four weeks

·  Her PANNS has been reduced by a total of 50% (in positive symptoms) from the initiation of Invega Sustenna

·  When questioned about injection-site pain, she states it is much better in the arm

·  Her weight has increased by an additional 2.5 pounds (total of 4.5 pounds in a 2-month period). She is somewhat bothered by the weight gain and is afraid that her husband does not like it. He is not present at this visit as she brought herself

·  She likes how she feels on the Invega Sustenna but is wondering if there is another drug like it that would not cause the weight gain

3. Decision Point Three

Select what you should do next:

Continue with the Invega Sustenna. Counsel client on the fact that weight gain from Invega Sustenna is not as much as what other drugs with similar efficacy can cause. Make appointment with a dietician and an exercise physiologist. Follow up in one month- I will choose this option

DC Invega Sustenna and start Abilify Maintena (aripiprazole ) 400 mg IM monthly (after a few test doses of Abilify oral have been tried and tolerated) with overlapping oral Abilify 10 mg in the MORNING

Continue Invega Sustenna and add on Qsymia (phentermine and topiramate) for weight loss

Continue with the Invega Sustenna. Counsel client on the fact that weight gain from Invega Sustenna is not as much as what other drugs with similar efficacy can cause. Make appointment with a dietician and an exercise physiologist. Follow up in one month

Guidance to Student
Weight gain can occur with Invega Sustenna. It is modest in nature and can be controlled with proper nutrition and exercise. It is always a good idea to try and control a client’s weight through consultation with a dietician and exercise physiologist (life coach) before switching to another agent when a product is showing efficacy for at least 6 months.

Abilify Maintena is a good option for someone who has good response to Abilify oral. Remember that Abilify does not bind to the D2 receptor for a great period of time (such as Invega) and can be less effective in certain individuals. Also, remember that akathisia can be a possible side effect. Once an IM long-acting medication is given, the effects of the drug (both efficacious and untoward effects) can be maintained for a long duration (up to a month or longer). Tolerability and efficacy should be established with oral medication before administering the first injection. Also a disadvantage to Abilify Maintena is that a 2-week overlap of oral therapy is required due to effective blood levels lagging behind the induction dose.

Qsymia is a weight loss medication that is a combination of phentermine and topiramate. It is only indicated to treat obesity. This client’s BMI (28.9 kg/M2) does not fit the definition of obesity (BMI >30 Kg/M2- Following from CDC website: Class 1: BMI of 30 to < 35, Class 2: BMI of 35 to < 40, Class 3: BMI of 40 or higher. Class 3 obesity is sometimes categorized as “extreme” or “severe” obesity). There are two things wrong with this therapy option. First, there are only a few occasions where add-on therapy to treat a side effect is acceptable, and weight gain is not one of those scenarios. Secondly, phentermine has a lot of cardiovascular toxicities (such as elevated BP, HR, and increased workload on the heart).