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NURS 6630 Treatment for a Patient With a Common Condition

TREATMENT FOR A PATIENT WITH A COMMON CONDITION

To better help this patient that is dealing with insomnia there are three questions that I would need to ask. How long have you been on your current medica; regiment? When in the day do you take these medications? When do you typically go to bed every night? The first two questions will allow me to determine if her medications are a contributing factor. The third question will allow me to determine if her depressive condition is a factor. All of these will allow a better understanding of what is occurring and allow the best diagnosis for this patient (NIH, 2022).

To better assess this situation there are individuals in this patient’s life that would need to be consulted. Her husband is recently deceased so I will want to know if she has a brother or sister. Her children would also be a good point of reference. A close friend in her life would also be an informative individual. I would like to know how often they are in contact with this patient. How well does she adhere to her medical regiment? The first question will allow me to assess how good of a support system she has in place when dealing with her depressive disorder. The second will allow me to determine if she is properly taking all her medication (Kryger, MD, FRCP(C), 2023).

The physical exams that would need to be conducted will include a visual assessment of her nasal airway including the septum and her throat. If this patient has a deviated septum, enlarged tonsils or a narrowing in her throat these could be contributing factors. I would also like to have a thyroid function test conducted to determine the level of thyroid hormones in her body. These help to regulate sleep function (Mayo Clinic, 2024).

There are different types of insomnia including primary, secondary, and comorbid. In this case her condition probably falls under the secondary insomnia umbrella. This patient has a history of diabetes and hypertension and she had been experiencing these symptoms before her husband passed away. So, her insomnia is probably caused by her other conditions and has only worsened due to her depression (Fisher, MD, 2019).

The two pharmacologic agents to help this patient’s depression are Citalopram 20 mg once daily and Sertraline 100 mg once per day. Citalopram works by inhibiting the central nervous system’s ability of undertaking a neuronal reuptake of serotonin while Sertraline inhibits its ability to undertake a neuronal uptake of serotonin. For this patient I would choose Citalopram due to it not having the likely hood of trouble with sleeping side effect (Abad & Guilleminault, 2018).

There are several contraindications with this patient and Citalopram. Including the risk of low sodium and potassium levels. This drug increases serotonin levels which can lower both levels in the blood stream. This can lead to confusion, lethargy, and fatigue. I would want to know what her sodium and potassium levels are before prescribing this for her depression (Sanjai, MD, 2021).

I would want to follow up with her after four weeks. I would like to see where her sodium and potassium levels are. She is taking Losartan for her hypertension, so it is recommended that you avoid potassium supplements and food high in potassium. If her potassium levels are lower than desired, it may be necessary to switch her to a drug such as lisinopril which is affecting in treating hypertension with out having to be concerned with the effects of potassium.

 

References

Abad, V. C., & Guilleminault, C. (2018). Insomnia in elderly patients: Recommendations for pharmacological management. Drugs & Aging, 35(9), 791–817. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40266-018-0569-8

Links to an external site.

Fisher, MD, K. J. (2019, February 7). Types of insomnia: How to tell them apart and how to treat them. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/types-of-insomnia#types

Links to an external site.

Kryger, MD, FRCP(C), M. (2023, March 13). Insomnia in the elderly: Causes, symptoms, and treatment. Medical News Today. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/insomnia-in-the-elderly#summary

Links to an external site.

Mayo Clinic. (2024). Insomnia – symptoms and causes – mayo clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/insomnia/symptoms-causes/syc-20355167

Links to an external site.

NIH. (2022, March 24). What is insomnia? National Institute of Health, NHLBI,. https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/insomnia

Links to an external site.

Sanjai, MD, S. (2021, December 3). Citalopram: Uses, dosage, side effects – drugs.com. Drugs.com. https://www.drugs.com/citalopram.html

Links to an external site.

 

NURS 6630 Treatment for a Patient With a Common Condition

NURS 6630 Treatment for a Patient With a Common Condition

Insomnia is one of the most common medical conditions you will encounter as a PNP. Insomnia is a common symptom of many mental illnesses, including anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, and ADHD (Abbott, 2016). Various studies have demonstrated the bidirectional relationship between insomnia and mental illness. In fact, about 50% of adults with insomnia have a mental health problem, while up to 90% of adults with depression experience sleep problems (Abbott, 2016). Due to the interconnected psychopathology, it is important that you, as the PNP, understand the importance of the effects some psychopharmacologic treatments may have on a patient’s mental health illness and their sleep patterns. Therefore, it is important that you understand and reflect on the evidence-based research in developing treatment plans to recommend proper sleep practices to your patients as well as recommend appropriate psychopharmacologic treatments for optimal health and well-being.
Reference: Abbott, J. (2016). What’s the link between insomnia and mental illness? Health. https://www.sciencealert.com/what-exactly-is-the-link-between-insomnia-and-mental-illness#:~:text=Sleep%20problems%20such%20as%20insomnia%20are%20a%20common,bipolar%20disorder%2C%20and%20attention%20deficit%20hyperactivity%20disorder%20%28ADHD%29
For this Discussion, review the case Learning Resources and the case study excerpt presented. Reflect on the case study excerpt and consider the therapy approaches you might take to assess, diagnose, and treat the patient’s health needs.

Case: An elderly widow who just lost her spouse.

Subjective: A patient presents to your primary care office today with chief complaint of insomnia. Patient is 75 YO with PMH of DM, HTN, and MDD. Her husband of 41 years passed away 10 months ago. Since then, she states her depression has gotten worse as well as her sleep habits. The patient has no previous history of depression prior to her husband’s death. She is awake, alert, and oriented x3. Patient normally sees PCP once or twice a year. Patient denies any suicidal ideations. Patient arrived at the office today by private vehicle. Patient currently takes the following medications:
• Metformin 500mg BID
• Januvia 100mg daily
• Losartan 100mg daily
• HCTZ 25mg daily
• Sertraline 100mg daily
Current weight: 88 kg
Current height: 64 inches
Temp: 98.6 degrees F
BP: 132/86

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By Day 3 of Week 7

Post a response to each of the following:
• List three questions you might ask the patient if she were in your office. Provide a rationale for why you might ask these questions.
• Identify people in the patient’s life you would need to speak to or get feedback from to further assess the patient’s situation. Include specific questions you might ask these people and why.
• Explain what, if any, physical exams, and diagnostic tests would be appropriate for the patient and how the results would be used.
• List a differential diagnosis for the patient. Identify the one that you think is most likely and explain why.
• List two pharmacologic agents and their dosing that would be appropriate for the patient’s antidepressant therapy based on pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. From a mechanism of action perspective, provide a rationale for why you might choose one agent over the other.
• For the drug therapy you select, identify any contraindications to use or alterations in dosing that may need to be considered based on ethical prescribing or decision-making. Discuss why the contraindication/alteration you identify exists. That is, what would be problematic with the use of this drug in individuals based on ethical prescribing guidelines or decision-making?
• Include any “check points” (i.e., follow-up data at Week 4, 8, 12, etc.), and indicate any therapeutic changes that you might make based on possible outcomes that may happen given your treatment options chosen.
Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

By Day 6 of Week 7

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days in one of the following ways:
• If your colleagues’ posts influenced your understanding of these concepts, be sure to share how and why. Include additional insights you gained.
• If you think your colleagues might have misunderstood these concepts, offer your alternative perspective and be sure to provide an explanation for them. Include resources to support your perspective.Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses and respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days and
Note: For this Discussion, you are required to complete your initial post before you will be able to view and respond to your colleagues’ postings. Begin by clicking on the “Post to Discussion Question” link and then select “Create Thread” to complete your initial post. Remember, once you click on Submit, you cannot delete or edit your own posts, and you cannot post anonymously. Please check your post carefully before clicking on Submit!
Submission and Grading Information
Grading Criteria

To access your rubric:
Week 7 Discussion Rubric

Post by Day 3 of Week 7 and Respond by Day 6 of Week 7

To Participate in this Discussion:
Week 7 Discussion

List three questions you might ask the patient if she were in your office. Provide a rationale for why you might ask these questions.

  1. Do you drink caffeinated drinks? If yes, how many do your drink a day and at what time?

Rationale: Caffeine is a stimulant. Individuals who drink caffeine during the day cause a reduction in 6-sulfatoxymelatonin (the main metabolite of melatonin) at night, which leads to sleep disturbance (O’Callaghan et al., 2018). The lack of sleep affects cognitive functioning and psychomotor response (O’Callaghan et al., 2018).

  1. How many hours of sleep are you getting each night?

Rationale: According to Levenson et al., when a person is living with unpleasant thoughts or worrying excessively, it can lead to sleep disturbances (2015). The decreased sleep can cause the person to worry about not getting enough sleep, leading to more anxiety and insomnia (Levenson et al., 2015).

  1. Have you had any feelings of depression, hopelessness, or feeling down in the past month?

Rationale: Individuals who have suffered a significant loss are at high risk for depression. Individuals with depression often experience insomnia. This question is one of two that can be used to assess a patient for depression and determine if further treatment is warranted (Assessment of Depression in Adults in Primary Care, 2020). The patient’s husband died ten months ago in the given scenario. If the patient responds positively to this question, it is critical to also assess for suicide risk.

Identify people in the patient’s life you would need to speak to or get feedback from to further assess the patient’s situation. Include specific questions you might ask these people and why.

It would be important to gain information from outside sources such as family, friends, and caretakers familiar with the patient’s daily life. If possible, individuals who have been around the patient from before her husband passed until now. You could ask the patient how she got to the appointment and if someone brought her, you could ask if she would be OK with you speaking with them. There are several questions you could ask.

Have you noticed a change in her interest in doing things?

Have you she seemed down or hopeless?

How has she been eating?

Do you know if she is taking her medications or noticed any side effects from her medications?

Have you noticed any anxiety or changes in memory?

Explain what, if any, physical exams and diagnostic tests would be appropriate for the patient and how the results would be used.

Upon the initial interview, it is possible to screen the patient for depression. There are several ways this can be done. Practitioners can use the Mini-Mental State Exam MMSE), Geriatric Depression Scale Short Form (SGDS), or the Cornell Scale for Depression in Dementia (CSDD) (Brown et al., 2015). It is important to note that older adults with depression can also have dementia, so screening for dementia would also be important (Brown et al., 2015). The CSDD can detect depression in individuals with cognitive impairment. The SGDS is used because it is fairly easy and short and can detect depression in older adults (Brown et al., 2015). Laboratory testing is also important as many organic illnesses can lead to insomnia and depression. Baseline lab work should include glucose, liver function, complete blood count, Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate, urea, creatinine, electrolytes, B-12, and Iron studies.

List a differential diagnosis for the patient. Identify the one that you think is most likely and explain why.

A differential diagnosis for depression in an elderly patient could be Vascular Depression. It is found in adults over 60 years of age and with no prior history of depression (Small, 2009). It can be found in patients with hypertension or a history of vascular disease believed to cause inflammation within the vascular system leading to the release of cytokines, especially after a stressful event (Jeon & Kim, 2018). When reviewing the patient’s medications, she is taking bother Losartan and hydrochlorothiazide to manage her hypertension, so the differential diagnosis of Vascular Depression is possible.

List two pharmacologic agents and their dosing that would be appropriate for the patient’s anti-depressant therapy based on pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. From a mechanism of action perspective, provide a rationale for why you might choose one agent over the other.

The patient is currently taking Sertraline 100mg daily. If the patient takes the medication as prescribed, the patient should see improvement in depressive symptoms. The scenario does not state how long the patient has been taking Sertraline. One side effect of SSRIs is that they can cause insomnia. At this time, it is appropriate to consider augmenting the Sertraline with a low dose TCA like trazodone. Research suggests that short-term use of a TCA can improve sleep as soon as the first dose (Wichniak et al., 2017). It is important to remember that when the patient’s depression symptoms improve, the TCA should be lowered or discontinued because it can cause oversedation (Wichniak et al., 2017).

Sertraline makes it difficult to keep blood sugar stable. It can also be recommended to switch the anti-depressant to Bupropion. Studies have shown that in patients with diabetes, burproprione successfully treats depression and controls blood sugar levels (Darwish et al., 2018). It would be necessary to monitor the patient’s blood pressure as bupropion can elevate blood pressure (Darwish et al., 2018).

For the drug therapy, you select, identify any contraindications to use or alterations in dosing that may need to be considered based on ethical prescribing or decision-making. Discuss why the contraindication/alteration you identify exists. That is, what would be problematic with the use of this drug in individuals based on ethical prescribing guidelines or decision-making?

Sertraline is contraindicated in patients taking thioridazine, pimozide, or monoamine oxidase inhibitors, including linezolid or methylene blue, and it should not be taken with other serotonergic medications (Singh & Saadabad, 2020). Buspirone is contradicted in patients with kidney and liver disease as the drug’s effects may increase due to slow kidney or liver removal. Trazadone is contraindicated for anyone taking an MAOI or has taken an MAOI in the past 14 days (Shin & Saadabadi, 2020).

Include any “check points” (i.e., follow-up data at Week 4, 8, 12, etc.), and indicate any therapeutic changes that you might make based on possible outcomes that may happen given your treatment options chosen.

It would be necessary to follow up with the patient in four weeks to see if adding Trazadone improves the patient’s sleep. If there is no improvement in the patient’s sleep or depressive symptoms, it would be time to consider changing the patient’s medication to buspirone.

References

Assessment of depression in adults in primary care [PDF]. (2020). Best Practice Medicine Journal New Zealand. https://bpac.org.nz/magazine/2009/Adultdep/docs/bpjse_adult_dep_assess_pages8- 12.pdf

Brown, E., Raue, P. J., & Halpert, K. (2015). Evidence-based practice guideline: Depression detection in older adults with dementia. Journal of Gerontological Nursing, 41(11), 15– 21. https://doi.org/10.3928/00989134-20151015-03

Darwish, L., Beroncal, E., Sison, M., & Swardfager, W. (2018). Depression in people with type 2 diabetes: Current perspectives. Diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome and Obesity: Targets and Therapy, Volume 11, 333–343. https://doi.org/10.2147/dmso.s106797

Jeon, S., & Kim, Y.-K. (2018). The role of neuroinflammation and neurovascular dysfunction in major depressive disorder. Journal of Inflammation Research, Volume 11, 179–192. https://doi.org/10.2147/jir.s141033

Levenson, J. C., Kay, D. B., & Buysse, D. J. (2015). The pathophysiology of insomnia. Chest, 147(4), 1179–1192. https://doi.org/10.1378/chest.14-1617

O’Callaghan, F., Muurlink, O., & Reid, N. (2018). Effects of caffeine on sleep quality and daytime functioning. Risk Management and Healthcare Policy, Volume 11, 263–271. https://doi.org/10.2147/rmhp.s156404

Park, L. T., & Zarate, C. A. (2019). Depression in the primary care setting. New England Journal of Medicine, 380(6), 559–568.https://doi.org/10.1056/nejmcp1712493

Shin, J., & Saadabadi, A. (2020). Trazadone. StatPearls. https://doi.org/https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK470560/

Singh, H. K., & Saadabad, A. (2020). Sertraline. StatPearls. https://doi.org/https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK547689/

Small, G. W. (2009). Differential diagnoses and assessment of depression in elderly patients. The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 70(12), e47. https://doi.org/10.4088/jcp.8001tx20c

Wichniak, A., Wierzbicka, A., Walęcka, M., & Jernajczyk, W. (2017). Effects of antidepressants on sleep. Current Psychiatry Reports, 19(9). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11920-017-0816-4

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Week 7 Discussion

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Edwina Etienne

07/12/2022

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Case: An elderly widow who just lost her spouse.

Subjective: A patient presents to your primary care office today with chief complaint of insomnia. Patient is 75 YO with PMH of DM, HTN, and MDD. Her husband of 41 years passed away 10 months ago. Since then, she states her depression has gotten worse as well as her sleep habits. The patient has no previous history of depression prior to her husband’s death. She is awake, alert, and oriented x3. Patient normally sees PCP once or twice a year. Patient denies any suicidal ideations. Patient arrived at the office today by private vehicle. Patient currently takes the following medications:

  • Metformin 500mg BID
  • Januvia 100mg daily
  • Losartan 100mg daily
  • HCTZ 25mg daily
  • Sertraline 100mg daily

Current weight: 88 kg

Current height: 64 inches

Temp: 98.6 degrees F

BP:132/86

Post a response to each of the following:

  • List three questions you might ask the patient if she were in your office. Provide a rationale for why you might ask these questions.
  • Identify people in the patient’s life you would need to speak to or get feedback from to further assess the patient’s situation. Include specific questions you might ask these people and why.
  • Explain what, if any, physical exams, and diagnostic tests would be appropriate for the patient and how the results would be used.
  • List a differential diagnosis for the patient. Identify the one that you think is most likely and explain why.
  • List two pharmacologic agents and their dosing that would be appropriate for the patient’s antidepressant therapy based on pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. From a mechanism of action perspective, provide a rationale for why you might choose one agent over the other.
  • For the drug therapy you select, identify any contraindications to use or alterations in dosing that may need to be considered based on the client’s ethnicity. Discuss why the contraindication/alteration you identify exists. That is, what would be problematic with the use of this drug in individuals of other ethnicities?
  • Include any “check points” (i.e., follow-up data at Week 4, 8, 12, etc.), and indicate any therapeutic changes that you might make based on possible outcomes that may happen given your treatment options chosen.