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Therapy for Patients With Schizophrenia

Therapy for Patients With Schizophrenia

According to the Schizophrenia and Related Disorders Alliance of America, approximately 3.5 million people in the United States are diagnosed with schizophrenia (n.d.), and it is one of the leading causes of disability. In practice, patients may present with delusions, hallucinations, disorganized thinking, disorganized or abnormal motor behavior, as well as other negative symptoms that can be disabling for these individuals. Not only are these symptoms one of the most challenging symptom clusters you will encounter, many are associated with other disorders, such as depression, bipolar disorder, and disorders on the schizophrenia spectrum. As a psychiatric nurse practitioner, you must understand the underlying neurobiology of these symptoms to select appropriate therapies and improve outcomes for patients.

This week, as you examine antipsychotic therapies, you explore the assessment and treatment of patients with psychosis and schizophrenia. You also consider ethical and legal implications of these therapies.

Reference: Schizophrenia and Related Disorders Alliance of America. (n.d.). About  schizophrenia.https://sardaa.org/resources/about-schizophrenia/#:~:text=Quick%20Facts%20About%20Schizophrenia.%20Schizophrenia%20can%20be%20found,is%20one%20of%20the%20leading%20causes%20of%20disability

 

Objectives

 

· Assess client factors and history to develop personalized therapy plans for patients with insomnia

· Analyze factors that influence pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes in patients requiring therapy for insomnia

· Assess patient factors and history to develop personalized plans of antipsychotic therapy for patients

· Analyze factors that influence pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes in patients requiring antipsychotic therapy

· Synthesize knowledge of providing care to patients presenting for antipsychotic therapy

· Analyze ethical and legal implications related to prescribing antipsychotic therapy to patients across the lifespan

 

Discussion: 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 

 

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 yo