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Therapy for Patients With Sleep/Wake Disorders

Case study

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Insomnia 31-year-old Male

76-year-old Iranian Male

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: 50–100 mg daily at bedtime

Hydroxyzine: 50 mg daily at bedtime

Decision Point One

 Tr Trazodone: 50–100 mg daily at bedtimeazodone: 50–100 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 a prolonged erection of the penis, 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

Decrease trazodone to 25 mg daily at bedtime

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

Continue dose. Encourage sleep hygiene. Follow up in 4 weeks

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.

Therapy for Patients With Sleep/Wake Disorders

From negative changes in mood to problems concentrating, sleep/wake disorders can have a tremendous impact on patients’ lives. When patients suffer from these disorders, they often seek medical care with the intent of receiving medications to manage symptoms. However, many of the medications used to treat sleep/wake disorders may be addictive, making thorough patient assessments and close follow-up care essential. To prescribe appropriate therapies with patient safety in mind, you must understand not only the pathophysiology of these disorders but also the pharmacologic agents used to treat them.

This week, as you study therapies for individuals with sleep/wake disorders, you examine the assessment and treatment of patients with these disorders. You also explore ethical and legal implications of these therapies.

Objectives

· Synthesize concepts related to the psychopharmacologic treatment of patients

· Assess patient factors and history to develop personalized therapy plans for patients with sleep/wake disorders

· Analyze factors that influence pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes in patients requiring therapy for sleep/wake disorders

· Synthesize knowledge of providing care to patients presenting for sleep/wake disorders

· Analyze ethical and legal implications related to prescribing therapy for patients with sleep/wake disorders

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.

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.

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