ASSESSING AND TREATING PATIENTS WITH BIPOLAR DISORDERS NURS 6630

Sample Answer for ASSESSING AND TREATING PATIENTS WITH BIPOLAR DISORDERS NURS 6630 Included After Question

ASSESSING AND TREATING PATIENTS WITH BIPOLAR DISORDERS NURS 6630

Week 5: Therapy for Patients With Bipolar Disorders 

Marcus, an 18-year-old high school senior, presents with symptoms of difficulty sleeping and feeling sad, which result in an initial diagnosis of depression. His mother later reports, however, that Marcus exhibits symptoms of irritability and risk-taking behaviors. (His little brother reported to his mother that they were driving over 90 miles an hour on the highway.) After further evaluation, Marcus’ psychiatric nurse practitioner diagnoses him with bipolar disorder. 

Cases like this are not uncommon with bipolar disorder, as initial assessments rarely provide all the information needed. In your role, as a psychiatric nurse practitioner, you must develop strategies for properly assessing and diagnosing these patients because treatments for bipolar disorder are significantly different than treatments for depression or other mood disorders. 

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

Learning Objectives 

Students will: 

  • Assess patient factors and history to develop personalized plans of bipolar therapy for patients 
  • Analyze factors that influence pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes in patients requiring bipolar therapy  
  • Synthesize knowledge of providing care to patients presenting for bipolar therapy 
  • Analyze ethical and legal implications related to prescribing bipolar therapy to patients across the life span 

 

Learning Resources 

 

Required Readings (click to expand/reduce)  

 

Ostacher, M. J., & Hsin, H. (2016). The use of antiepileptic drugs in psychiatry. In T. A. Stern, M. Favo, T. E. Wilens, & J. F. Rosenbaum. (Eds.), Massachusetts General Hospital psychopharmacology and neurotherapeutics (pp. 93–98). Elsevier. 

Perlis, R. H., & Ostacher, M. J. (2016a). Bipolar disorder. In T. A. Stern, M. Favo, T. E. Wilens, & J. F. Rosenbaum. (Eds.), Massachusetts General Hospital psychopharmacology and neurotherapeutics (pp. 48–60). Elsevier. 

Perlis, R. H., & Ostacher, M. J. (2016b). Lithium and its role in psychiatry. In T. A. Stern, M. Favo, T. E. Wilens, & J. F. Rosenbaum. (Eds.), Massachusetts General Hospital psychopharmacology and neurotherapeutics (pp. 86–92). Elsevier. 

Traeger, L., Brennan, M. M., & Herman, J. B. (2016). Treatment adherence. In T. A. Stern, M. Favo, T. E. Wilens, & J. F. Rosenbaum. (Eds.), Massachusetts General Hospital psychopharmacology and neurotherapeutics (pp. 20–26). Elsevier.   

 

American Psychiatric Association. (2010b). Practice guideline for the treatment of patients with bipolar disorder (2nd ed.). https://psychiatryonline.org/pb/assets/raw/sitewide/practice_guidelines/guidelines/bipolar.pdf 

 

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. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00228-015-1855-6 

 

Hirschfeld, R. M. A. (n.d.). Guideline watch: Practice guideline for the treatment of patients with bipolar disorder (2nd ed.).  https://psychiatryonline.org/pb/assets/raw/sitewide/practice_guidelines/guidelines/bipolar-watch.pdf 

 

Vitiello, B. (2013). How effective are the current treatments for children diagnosed with manic/mixed bipolar disorder? CNS Drugs, 27(5), 331–333. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40263-013-0060-3 

 

 

Medication Resources (click to expand/reduce)  

 

 

U.S. Food & Drug Administration. (n.d.). Drugs@FDA: FDA-approved drugs. https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cder/daf/index.cfm 

 

Note: To access the following medications, use the Drugs@FDA resource. Type the name of each medication in the keyword search bar. Select the hyperlink related to the medication name you searched. Review the supplements provided and select the package label resource file associated with the medication you searched. If a label is not available, you may need to conduct a general search outside of this resource provided. Be sure to review the label information for each medication as this information will be helpful for your review in preparation for your Assignments. 

Review the following medications: 

  • amitriptyline 
  • bupropion 
  • citalopram 
  • clomipramine 
  • desipramine 
  • desvenlafaxine 
  • doxepin 
  • duloxetine 
  • escitalopram 
  • fluoxetine 
  • fluvoxamine 
  • imipramine 
  • ketamine 
  • mirtazapine 
  • nortriptyline 
  • paroxetine 
  • selegiline 
  • sertraline 
  • trazodone 
  • venlafaxine 
  • vilazodone 
  • vortioxetine 

 

Required Media (click to expand/reduce)  

 

 

Case Study: An Asian American Woman with Bipolar Disorder 
Note: This case study will serve as the foundation for this week’s Assignment. 

 

 

Optional Resources (click to expand/reduce)  

 

 

Mostafavi, A., Solhi, M., Mohammadi, M., Hamedi, M., Keshavarzi, M., & Akhondzadeh, S. (2014). Melatonin decreases olanzapine induced metabolic side-effects in adolescents with bipolar disorder: A randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial. Acta Medica Iranica, 52(10), 734–739. http://acta.tums.ac.ir/index.php/acta 

 

 

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. 

 

By Day 7  

Submit your Assignment.  

Submission and Grading Information 

To submit your completed Assignment for review and grading, do the following: 

  • Please save your Assignment using the naming convention “WK5Assgn+last name+first initial.(extension)” as the name. 
  • Click the Week 5 Assignment Rubric to review the Grading Criteria for the Assignment. 
  • Click the Week 5 Assignment link. You will also be able to “View Rubric” for grading criteria from this area. 
  • Next, from the Attach File area, click on the Browse My Computer button. Find the document you saved as “WK5Assgn+last name+first initial.(extension)” and click Open. 
  • If applicable: From the Plagiarism Tools area, click the checkbox for I agree to submit my paper(s) to the Global Reference Database. 
  • Click on the Submit button to complete your submission. 

Grading Criteria 

 

To access your rubric: 

Week 5 Assignment Rubric 

 

Check Your Assignment Draft for Authenticity 

 

To check your Assignment draft for authenticity: 

Submit your Week 5 Assignment draft and review the originality report. 

 

Submit Your Assignment by Day 7 of Week 5 

 

To participate in this Assignment: 

Week 5 Assignment 

 

 

What’s Coming Up in Week 6? 

 

Photo Credit: [BrianAJackson]/[iStock / Getty Images Plus]/Getty Images 

Next week, you will continue to build on your assessment and treatment skills as you examine patients presenting with signs and symptoms consistent with anxiety and PTSD. You will also complete your Midterm Exam. 

Next Week 

 

To go to the next week: 

Week 6 

 

 

A Sample Answer For the Assignment: ASSESSING AND TREATING PATIENTS WITH BIPOLAR DISORDERS NURS 6630

Title: ASSESSING AND TREATING PATIENTS WITH BIPOLAR DISORDERS NURS 6630

ASSESSING AND TREATING PATIENTS WITH BIPOLAR DISORDERS NURS 6630

Bipolar is a mental health disorder characterized by extreme mood changes that alter the behavior and normal function of a patient. The mood fluctuation is on extreme ends and may take days to weeks before change, accompanied by difficulties in performing daily tasks and social interactions. The mood changes are mania or hypomania; mania is a happy or irritable mood, and hypomania is a sad mood or depression (Ashok, et al, 2017). These symptoms usually occur alternatively after weeks associated with a period of the normal state. There are types of bipolar which include bipolar 1, bipolar 2, and cyclothymic bipolar. Bipolar 1 has alternating episodes of mania, hypomania, and neutral mood. Bipolar two is associated with a major depressive mood disorder and hypomania state. Cyclothymic has frequent mood swings.

The signs and symptoms of the manic episode are diminished need for sleep, increased and faster speech, increased activity, increased risky behavior, distractibility, and uncontrollable racing thoughts. Hypomania presents with intense sadness or despair, loss of interest, fatigue, difficulties in concentration, frequent thoughts, and suicidal ideation. Common causes of bipolar are genetic predisposition, family history of bipolar, stressful environment, and substance abuse. The patient in the case study is a 26years old female with bipolar. According to the American psychiatric association, she meets the DSM-5 criteria through her symptoms of the diminished need to sleep, excessive talking, increased distractibility, she is in a happy mood, rapid or pressured speech, and increased energy. She scores 22 on the young scale mania. The interventions for bipolar are the use of antipsychotics and psychotherapy. Antipsychotics relieve the symptoms of the patient while psychotherapy enables the patient to change their thinking and behavior to improve cognitive functions and quality of life. The essay describes the three decisions made in treating the patient including the impact of ethical principles.

Decision One

Which decision did you select?

Begin Seroquel XR 300mg orally at HS

Why did you select this decision?

Seroquel is a second-generation antipsychotic with a high affinity for dopamine and serotonin receptors. Its mechanism of action is by antagonizing these receptors and binding them to the norepinephrine transporter (Hamed, et al, 2017). This helps in improving memory, mood, aggression, and the muscle movement that plays a vital role in the brain for pleasure. Seroquel is the best drug for the patient because it is FDA approved for acute manic episodes and bipolar. Moreover, the American psychiatric association proves it is efficient in treating bipolar in its studies.

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ASSESSING AND TREATING PATIENTS WITH BIPOLAR DISORDERS NURS 6630
ASSESSING AND TREATING PATIENTS WITH BIPOLAR DISORDERS NURS 6630

Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise?

Risperdal is a second-generation antipsychotic for treating schizophrenia and maintenance treatment in bipolar. Its mechanism of action is by decreasing the serotonin and dopamine activity in the brain thus reducing the mood symptoms, agitation, and symptoms of schizophrenia. it has 94% bioavailability and is protein-bound with an active metabolite (Schoretsanitis, et al, 2017). It has a plasma half-life of three to twenty hours. However, I did not select this drug for the patient because it has undesirable effects like drooling, nausea, weight gain, nausea, fatigue, and tiredness. Lithium is a commonly prescribed drug for prophylaxis and treatment of manic episodes. Its mechanism of action is by modulating the neurotransmitters and inhibiting the excitatory neurotransmitters like dopamine and glutamate. It has neuro-proliferative and neuroprotective effects on the brain that helps in regulating mood. It is FDA approved for mood disorders and bipolar. However, I did not select the drug because the patient has not been compliant due to its unpleasant effects.

What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision?

The expectations of starting the patient on Seroquel XR 300mg are to relieve the symptoms and reduce the score of the young scale mania. The expected side effects are dry mouth, drowsiness, constipation, and weight gain.

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

Communication is the exchange of information from the sender to the recipient to understand and interpret and eventually respond. Communicating with a patient with bipolar can be hectic because they talk fast and have racing thoughts. Therefore, the nurse incorporates the principle of justice when assessing the patient. Justice is providing equal and quality services to all despite their underlying issues. Justice enables the nurse to communicate effectively with the patient.

ASSESSING AND TREATING PATIENTS WITH BIPOLAR DISORDERS NURS 6630

Decision Two

Which decision did you select?

Discontinue Seroquel and begin Geodon 40mg

Why did you select this decision?

Geodon is a second-generation antipsychotic that inhibits the reuptake of norepinephrine and serotonin, blocking the alpha and antihistaminic activities. These decrease hallucinations, improve clear and positive thinking, reduces agitation, and improve activities of daily living (Findling et al, 2022). It has 60% bioavailability and is 99% protein bound. The drug is initiated at a low dose and increased gradually within two weeks to reduce the side effects. I chose this drug because it is effective in treating bipolar and has no side effects on the patient.

Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise?

Increasing the dose of Seroquel to 400mg to improve the patient’s symptoms is not a good option because she previously complained of weight gain and constipation. Increasing the dose worsens the drug’s side effects. The use of dietary measures to control weight gain and obesity is ineffective because the drug has the effect of muscarinic cholinergic antagonism that induces gastrointestinal hypomotility and hence constipation and weight gain. Decreasing the dosage will not have positive effects on the patient’s symptoms and will still exhibit unpleasant side effects.

What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision?

The expectation of switching the patient’s treatment to Geodon is to improve the symptoms, decrease the young scale mania, and relieve constipation and weight gain.

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

The nurse considers the principle of autonomy in this decision point. Autonomy is respect for a person’s decisions and preferences (Asl, et al, 2022). The patient is uncomfortable with Seroquel because it causes constipation despite the improvement of the symptoms. The nurse, therefore, changes the treatment to ensure patient satisfaction.

Decision Three

Which decision did you select?

Increase Geodon to 60 mg orally BID with a 500-calorie meal

Why did you select this decision?

Geodon was effective during the initial stage of treatment. Increasing from 40mg to 60mg is effective in improving the symptoms. Additionally, the recommended dose is 60mg to 80mg with a gradual increment every two weeks. I selected this choice because it will hasten the improvement of the symptoms.

Why did you not select the other two options provided in the exercise?

I did not continue with the same drug dosage because the American psychiatric association recommends 60mg to 80mg to relieve the symptoms. I did not augment with lithium because it has unpleasant side effects. Additionally, augmentation is recommendable in the incidence of depression and hypomania. There is a contraindication for lithium augmentation with antipsychotics like olanzapine, haloperidol, and Geodon.

What were you hoping to achieve by making this decision?

The expectation for increasing the dosage is to hasten the improvement of the symptoms.

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

The nurse uses the principle of beneficence and non-maleficence. Beneficence is doing what is right and non-maleficence is protecting the patient from harm. The nurse carefully analyzes the best treatment for the patient to improve the symptoms and prevent adverse effects.

Conclusion

Bipolar is a mood fluctuation disorder on the extreme ends and may take days to weeks before change, accompanied by difficulties in performing daily tasks and social interactions. The signs and symptoms of the manic episode are diminished need for sleep, increased and faster speech, increased activity, increased risky behavior, distractibility, and uncontrollable racing thoughts. Hypomania presents with intense sadness or despair, loss of interest, fatigue, difficulties in concentration, frequent thoughts, and suicidal ideation. Seroquel is a second-generation antipsychotic that antagonizes these receptors to improve memory, mood, aggression, and muscle movement that plays a vital role in the brain for pleasure. However, it causes weight gain and constipation. Geodon is an effective drug for treating bipolar because it is well tolerated. Ethical principles in nursing improve assessment and communication techniques. They are beneficence, autonomy, consent, justice, and non-maleficence.

References

Ashok, A., Marques, T., Jauhar, S. et al. The dopamine hypothesis of bipolar affective disorder: the state of the art and implications for treatment. Mol Psychiatry 22, 666–679 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1038/mp.2017.16

Asl, R. G., Taghinejad, R., Parizad, N., & Jasemi, M. (2022). The relationship between professional autonomy and job stress among intensive care unit nurses: A descriptive correlational study. Iranian Journal of Nursing and Midwifery Research27(2), 119. https://doi.org/10.4103%2Fijnmr.ijnmr_375_20

Findling, R. L., Atkinson, S., Bachinsky, M., Raiter, Y., Abreu, P., Ianos, C., & Chappell, P. (2022). Efficacy, Safety, and Tolerability of Flexibly Dosed Ziprasidone in Children and Adolescents with Mania in Bipolar I Disorder: A Randomized Placebo-Controlled Replication Study. Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology32(3), 143-152. https://doi.org/10.1089/cap.2021.0121

Hamed, R., AlJanabi, R., Sunoqrot, S., & Abbas, A. (2017). The effect of pH, buffer capacity and ionic strength on quetiapine fumarate release from matrix tablets prepared using two different polymeric blends. Drug Development and Industrial Pharmacy43(8), 1330-1342. https://doi.org/10.1080/03639045.2017.1318897

Schoretsanitis, G., Spina, E., Hiemke, C., & de Leon, J. (2017). A systematic review and combined analysis of therapeutic drug monitoring studies for long-acting risperidone. Expert review of clinical pharmacology10(9), 965-981.

https://doi.org/10.1080/17512433.2017.1345623

In the provided case study, the 8-year-old Caucasian female patient came to the clinic accompanied by her parents for psychiatric evaluation. The patient’s teacher suggested that the patient might be having attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Their family physician also suggested that the patient should see a psychiatrist for further evaluation of her mental disorder. The patient parents came with a completed Conner’s Teacher Rating Scale-Revised screening tool, which revealed that the patient is easily distracted at school, and with a short attention span. The patient also displayed poor arithmetic, spelling, and reading skills in addition to being inattentive and forgetful most of the time. Her teacher claims that the patient even failing to complete her homework will lack interest in school activities. She also fails to follow instructions at times. Despite the patient’s parents being in denial that their daughter has ADHD, mental status examination results proved otherwise together with the Conner’s Teacher Rating Scale-Revised screening tool completed by the teacher, supporting the diagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), predominantly inattentive presentation.

Developing a treatment plan for pediatric patients with mental disorders is quite challenging given the safety issues associated with this age group. However, appropriate prescriptive practice will involve considering patient-specific factors that might affect the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes. Such factors which will affect the decision on which drugs to prescribe include the patient young age, Caucasian race, female gender, ADHD diagnosis, and presenting symptoms. The purpose of this discussion is thus to demonstrate the appropriate decision-making process in the selection of the most appropriate intervention in the treatment of the 8-year-old attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), predominantly inattentive presentation.

Decision Point One

Selected Decision and Rationale

            From the listed options, initiating Ritalin (methylphenidate) 10mg chewable tablets taken every morning was decided on as the initial intervention. Ritalin is recommended by most clinical guidelines as the first-line medication for the management of ADHD among both children and adults (Rodrigues et al., 2021). Despite the psychostimulant not being approved by the FDA, it has displayed great effectiveness in the management of ADHD with a desirable safety profile in most children from ages 6 to 15 years (American Psychiatric Association, 2013; Castells et al., 2021)). It has demonstrated a substantial impact in managing ADHD symptoms such as inattention, forgetfulness, impulsivity, diminished interest, and hyperactivity among children (Hodgkins et al., 2012). The chewable formulation is considered the best option for children with sweeteners to mask the bitter taste of the drug (Breaux et al., 2022). Consequently, the drug has a short onset of action of between 1 to 2 hours with a long duration of action of between 7.5 to 10.5 hours after oral administration (Mechler et al., 2021). This helps in the management of the patient’s symptoms all day long (Coghill et al., 2021).

Bupropion is associated with increased risks of seizures among children below the age of 10 years, hence not an appropriate decision (Coghill et al., 2021). Intuniv on the other hand is associated with cardiovascular side effects, hence should only be considered in case there is no other safer and more effective drug for use in the pediatric population (Rodrigues et al., 2021).

Expected Outcome

The patient will experience improved symptoms of ADHD in the next four weeks (Coghill et al., 2021). She should be able to improve her spelling, arithmetic, and language skills, in addition to being more attentive and able to concentrate on school work (Hodgkins et al., 2012). Her school performance will improve significantly within this period.

Ethical Considerations

            The patient is 8 years of age, which gives the parents legal responsibility of making decisions concerning the health of their child (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). As such, the PMHNP must educate them adequately regarding the patient’s diagnosis and potential treatment options, to promote sound decision-making in promoting the health of their child (Rodrigues et al., 2021).

Decision Point Two

Selected Decision and Rationale

            The second decision was to change the treatment regimen to long-acting Ritalin 20mg administered orally in the morning. Based on the treatment outcome, Ritalin displayed potential effectiveness given that the patient’s ADHD symptoms improved evidenced by her improved school performance (Breaux et al., 2022). However, since the medication was not able to manage the patient’s symptoms throughout the entire day, it was necessary to introduce a long-acting formulation to prolong the duration of action of the drug (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). Studies show that long-acting Ritalin lasts for between 8 to 12 hours hence, helps in managing the patient’s symptoms throughout the day (Castells et al., 2021). It is also administered once daily which is more convenient and much easier. The patient also reported a side effect of elevated pulse, which is a common self-limiting side effect of Ritalin that is expected to diminish with time (Coghill et al., 2021).

Continuing with the same drug at the same dosage was inappropriate as the patient would still exhibit ADHD symptoms later in the day, once the drug wears off from the body system (Mechler et al., 2021). Replacing Ritalin with Adderall is also inappropriate as Adderall is associated with increased incidences of suicidal events when used among children (Hodgkins et al., 2012).

Expected Outcome

            The long-acting formulation is expected to manage the patient’s symptoms all day long within the following four weeks (Breaux et al., 2022). The patient’s school performance will improve even further. The side effect of elevated heart rate will resolve completely within this time (Coghill et al., 2021).

Ethical Considerations

            In making this decision, the PMHNP had to consider several ethical principles including justice, beneficence, nonmaleficence, and respect for the patient’s autonomy (Breaux et al., 2022). The patient was quite comfortable with how the drug was working, but only concerned with the side effect, and effectiveness of the medication later in the day (Rodrigues et al., 2021). As such, it was necessary to respect the patient and display clinical judgment in making decisions that will promote the patient’s mental health.

Decision Point Three

Selected Decision and Rationale

            Maintaining the patient on the current medication and reevaluating after four weeks, seemed to be the most appropriate decision for the third intervention. The patient reported great effectiveness and tolerance to the medication, with resolved side effects of an elevated pulse (Mechler et al., 2021). Previous evidence shows that once the optimal dose of Ritalin has been attained, it can take between 8 to 12 weeks to completely manage the patient’s symptoms of ADHD (American Psychiatric Association, 2013; Castells et al., 2021). Consequently, at safe doses, long-term use of the drug has been associated with limited possibilities of side effects, hence the need to reevaluate the patient within 4 weeks (Hodgkins et al., 2012). Studies also show that long-term use of Ritalin normally reduces the risks of side effects as the patient will display further tolerance to the drug, enhancing its safety profile (Breaux et al., 2022).

Increasing the dose of Ritalin to 30mg was not necessary at this point, as studies suggest that low effective doses are safer to use to promote positive outcomes, with reduced risks of side effects (Mechler et al., 2021). Consequently, obtaining EKG at this point was not necessary given that the patient’s pulse had already resolved back to normal for her age, with a recording of 92 during the current visit (Rodrigues et al., 2021).

Expected Outcome

            With great compliance to the treatment regimen, the patient will report even further management of the ADHD symptoms over the following two weeks (Breaux et al., 2022). Her academic performance is also expected to improve (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). No side effects are expected.

Ethical Considerations

            The nurse’s main objective is to promote the health of the patient and not harm. At this point, the patient was satisfied with the treatment outcome (Hodgkins et al., 2012). It was thus necessary to respect the patient’s autonomy and maintain the dose for further evaluation of the treatment outcome (Mechler et al., 2021).

Conclusion

The 8-year-old patient in the case study presented with symptoms of ADHD. Formulating a treatment plan for the patient involved consideration of certain patient-specific factors which affect her pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). Such factors which will affect the decision on which drugs to prescribe include the patient young age, Caucasian race, female gender, ADHD diagnosis, and presenting symptoms. Based on these factors, the first decision was to initiate a 10mg Ritalin chewable table once daily as recommended by most clinical guidelines given its effectiveness in the management of ADHD and safety for pediatric use (Coghill et al., 2021). Intuniv and bupropion were neglected because of their increased risks of side effects among children as reported by most studies (Mechler et al., 2021). After 4 weeks, the patient came back to the clinic reporting improved symptoms but with side effects of increased pulse rate. The second decision was thus to change the treatment regimen to long-acting Ritalin 20mg once daily in the morning, to prolong the duration of action of the medication throughout the day (Castells et al., 2021). Maintaining the dose would still lead to ineffectiveness, while Adderall display increased risks of suicidality hence neglected (Breaux et al., 2022).

The patient reported further improvement in ADHD symptoms all day long, with resolved side effects of elevated pulse, which led to the final decision of maintaining the treatment regimen and reevaluating the patient after 4 weeks. Obtaining EKG and increasing the dose of Ritalin was not necessarily due to safety issues (Hodgkins et al., 2012). Finally, the PMHNP encountered several ethical considerations in each decision process with the observation of ethical principles such as justice, respect for patient autonomy, not harm, and beneficence (Rodrigues et al., 2021).

 

 

References

American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed.). https://doi.org/10.1176/appi.books.9780890425596

Breaux, R., Dunn, N. C., Swanson, C. S., Larkin, E., Waxmonsky, J., & Baweja, M. D. (2022). A Mini-Review of Pharmacological and Psychosocial Interventions for Reducing Irritability Among Youth With ADHD. Frontiers in Psychiatry, 151. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyt.2022.794044

Castells, X., Ramon, M., Cunill, R., Olivé, C., & Serrano, D. (2021). Relationship between treatment duration and efficacy of pharmacological treatment for ADHD: a meta-analysis and meta-regression of 87 randomized controlled clinical trials. Journal of attention disorders25(10), 1352-1361. https://doi.org/10.1177/1087054720903372

Coghill, D., Banaschewski, T., Cortese, S., Asherson, P., Brandeis, D., Buitelaar, J., … & Simonoff, E. (2021). The management of ADHD in children and adolescents: bringing evidence to the clinic: perspective from the European ADHD Guidelines Group (EAGG). European Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 1-25. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00787-021-01871-x

Hodgkins, P., Shaw, M., McCarthy, S., & Sallee, F. R. (2012). The pharmacology and clinical outcomes of amphetamines to treat ADHD: Does composition matter? CNS Drugs, 26(3), 245–268. https://doi.org/10.2165/11599630-000000000-00000

Mechler, K., Banaschewski, T., Hohmann, S., & Häge, A. (2021). Evidence-based pharmacological treatment options for ADHD in children and adolescents. Pharmacology & Therapeutics, 107940. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pharmthera.2021.107940

Rodrigues, R., Lai, M. C., Beswick, A., Gorman, D. A., Anagnostou, E., Szatmari, P., … & Ameis, S. H. (2021). Practitioner Review: Pharmacological treatment of attention‐deficit/hyperactivity disorder symptoms in children and youth with autism spectrum disorder: a systematic review and meta‐analysis. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry62(6), 680-700. https://doi.org/10.1111/jcpp.13305

Grading Rubric

Performance Category 100% or highest level of performance

100%

16 points

Very good or high level of performance

88%

14 points

Acceptable level of performance

81%

13 points

Inadequate demonstration of expectations

68%

11 points

Deficient level of performance

56%

9 points

 

Failing level

of performance

55% or less

0 points

 Total Points Possible= 50           16 Points    14 Points 13 Points        11 Points           9 Points          0 Points
Scholarliness

Demonstrates achievement of scholarly inquiry for professional and academic topics.

Presentation of information was exceptional and included all of the following elements:

  • Provides evidence of scholarly inquiry relevant to required TD topic(s).
  • Presents specific information from scholarly sources to develop a comprehensive presentation of facts.
  • Uses at least one outside scholarly reference that is relevant, less than 5 years old (use of older references requires instructor permission) and reliable for the required topic.*
  • Uses in-text citation and full reference at end of posting when presenting another person’s thoughts as quotes or paraphrase of information.
Presentation of information was good, but was superficial in places and included all of the following elements:

  • Provides evidence of scholarly inquiry relevant to required TD topic(s).
  • Presents specific information from scholarly sources to develop a comprehensive presentation of facts.
  • Uses at least one outside scholarly reference that is relevant, less than 5 years old (use of older references requires instructor permission) and reliable for the required topic.*
  • Uses in-text citation and full reference at end of posting when presenting another person’s thoughts as quotes or paraphrase of information.
Presentation of information was minimally demonstrated in all of the following elements:

  • Provides evidence of scholarly inquiry relevant to required TD topic(s).
  • Presents specific information from scholarly sources to develop a comprehensive presentation of facts.
  • Uses at least one outside scholarly reference that is relevant, less than 5 years old (use of older references requires instructor permission) and reliable for the required topic.*
  • Uses in-text citation and full reference at end of posting when presenting another person’s thoughts as quotes or paraphrase of information.
 

Presentation of information is unsatisfactory in one of the following elements:

  • Provides evidence of scholarly inquiry relevant to required TD topic(s).
  • Presents specific information from scholarly sources to develop a comprehensive presentation of facts.
  • Uses at least one outside scholarly reference that is relevant, less than 5 years old (use of older references requires instructor permission) and reliable for the required topic.*
  • Uses in-text citation and full reference at end of posting when presenting another person’s thoughts as quotes or paraphrase of information.
 

Presentation of information is unsatisfactory in two of the following elements:

  • Provides evidence of scholarly inquiry relevant to required TD topic(s).
  • Presents specific information from scholarly sources to develop a comprehensive presentation of facts.
  • Uses at least one outside scholarly reference that is relevant, less than 5 years old (use of older references requires instructor permission) and reliable for the required topic.*
  • Uses in-text citation and full reference at end of posting when presenting another person’s thoughts as quotes or paraphrase of information.
Presentation of information is unsatisfactory in three or more of the following elements

  • Provides evidence of scholarly inquiry relevant to required TD topic(s).
  • Presents specific information from scholarly sources to develop a comprehensive presentation of facts.
  • Uses at least one outside scholarly reference that is relevant, less than 5 years old (use of older references requires instructor permission) and reliable for the required topic.*
  • Uses in-text citation and full reference at end of posting when presenting another person’s thoughts as quotes or paraphrase of information
 16 Points  14 Points  13 Points 11 Points 9 Points  0 Points
Application of Course Knowledge

Demonstrate the ability to analyze and apply principles, knowledge and information learned in the outside readings and relate them to real-life professional situations

Presentation of information was exceptional and included all of the following elements:

  • Applies principles, knowledge and information from scholarly resources to the required topic.
  • Applies facts, principles or concepts learned from scholarly resources to a professional experience.
  • Application of information is comprehensive and specific to the required topic.
Presentation of information was good, but was superficial in places and included all of the following elements:

  • Applies principles, knowledge and information from scholarly resources to the required topic.
  • Applies facts, principles or concepts learned from scholarly resources to a professional experience.
  • Application of information is comprehensive and specific to the required topic.
Presentation of information was minimally demonstrated in the all of the following elements:

  • Applies principles, knowledge and information from scholarly resources to the required topic.
  • Applies facts, principles or concepts learned from scholarly resources to a professional experience.
  • Application of information is comprehensive and specific to the required topic.
Presentation of information is unsatisfactory in one of the following elements:

  • Applies principles, knowledge and information from scholarly resources to the required topic.
  • Applies facts, principles or concepts learned from and scholarly resources to a professional experience.
  • Application of information is comprehensive and specific to the required topic.
Presentation of information is unsatisfactory in two of the following elements:

  • Applies principles, knowledge and information from scholarly resources to the required topic.
  • Applies facts, principles or concepts learned from scholarly resources to a professional experience.
  • Application of information is comprehensive and specific to the required topic.
Presentation of information is unsatisfactory in three of the following elements

  • Applies principles, knowledge and information and scholarly resources to the required topic.
  • Applies facts, principles or concepts learned scholarly resources to a professional experience.
  • Application of information is comprehensive and specific to the required topic.
   10 Points 9 Points  6 Points  0 Points
Interactive Dialogue

Initial post should be a minimum of 300 words (references do not count toward word count)

The peer and instructor responses must be a minimum of 150 words each (references do not count toward word count)

Responses are substantive and relate to the topic.

Demonstrated all of the following:

  • Initial post must be a minimum of 300 words.
  • The peer and instructor responses must be a minimum of 150 words each.
  • Responses are substantive
  • Responses are related to the topic of discussion.
Demonstrated 3 of the following:

  • Initial post must be a minimum of 300 words.
  • The peer and instructor responses must be a minimum of 150 words each.
  • Responses are substantive
  • Responses are related to the topic of discussion.
Demonstrated 2 of the following:

  • Initial post must be a minimum of 300 words.
  • The peer and instructor responses must be a minimum of 150 words each.
  • Responses are substantive
  • Responses are related to the topic of discussion.
Demonstrated 1 or less of the following:

  • Initial post must be a minimum of 300 words.
  • The peer and instructor responses must be a minimum of 150 words each.
  • Responses are substantive
  • Responses are related to the topic of discussion.
  8 Points 7 Points  6 Points         5 Points          4 Points  0 Points
Grammar, Syntax, APA

Points deducted for improper grammar, syntax and APA style of writing.

The source of information is the APA Manual 6th Edition

Error is defined to be a unique APA error. Same type of error is only counted as one error.

The following was present:

  • 0-3 errors in APA format

AND

  • Responses have 0-3 grammatical, spelling or punctuation errors

AND

  • Writing style is generally clear, focused on topic,and facilitates communication.
The following was present:

  • 4-6 errors in APA format.

AND/OR

  • Responses have 4-5 grammatical, spelling or punctuation errors

AND/OR

  • Writing style is somewhat focused on topic.
The following was present:

  • 7-9 errors in APA format.

AND/OR

  • Responses have 6-7 grammatical, spelling or punctuation errors

AND/OR

  • Writing style is slightly focused on topic making discussion difficult to understand.
 

The following was present:

  • 10- 12 errors in APA format

AND/OR

  • Responses have 8-9 grammatical, spelling and punctuation errors

AND/OR

  • Writing style is not focused on topic, making discussion difficult to understand.
 

The following was present:

  • 13 – 15 errors in APA format

AND/OR

  • Responses have 8-10 grammatical, spelling or punctuation errors

AND/OR

  • Writing style is not focused on topic, making discussion difficult to understand.

AND/OR

  • The student continues to make repeated mistakes in any of the above areas after written correction by the instructor.
The following was present:

  • 16 to greater errors in APA format.

AND/OR

  • Responses have more than 10 grammatical, spelling or punctuation errors.

AND/OR

  • Writing style does not facilitate communication
  0 Points Deducted 5 Points Lost
Participation

Requirements

Demonstrated the following:

  • Initial, peer, and faculty postings were made on 3 separate days
Failed to demonstrate the following:

  • Initial, peer, and faculty postings were made on 3 separate days
  0 Points Lost 5 Points Lost
Due Date Requirements Demonstrated all of the following:

  • The initial posting to the graded threaded discussion topic is posted within the course no later than Wednesday, 11:59 pm MT.

A minimum of one peer and one instructor responses are to be posted within the course no later than Sunday, 11:59 pm MT.

Demonstrates one or less of the following.

  • The initial posting to the graded threaded discussion topic is posted within the course no later than Wednesday, 11:59 pm MT.

A minimum of one peer and one instructor responses are to be posted within the course no later than Sunday, 11:59 pm MT.