Case Study: Alzheimer’s DiseaseSuggested Uses: Psychiatric/Mental Health, Medical-Surgical,


During a physical exam, the nurse notes that Mary Stanfield, a 75-year-old female, forgets common words and is wearing only a thin sweater on a very cold day. Mary is scheduled for in- depth evaluation for possible Alzheimer's Disease (AD).

A mental status exam shows altered cognition. The nurse teaches Mary and her husband Sam about early warning signs and risk factors for AD. Lab tests, PET, and MRI are scheduled. The nurse explains the purpose of the tests to the couple. After the tests, trazodone (Desyrel) and donepezil (Aricept) are prescribed, and the nurse provides teaching about the medications.

The nurse identifies "Distorted thought processes" as a priority problem and teaches Sam how to promote cognitive restructuring. Later, he reports that Mary’s symptoms are worsening. The nurse teaches Sam about disease progression, measures to reduce urinary incontinence, and strategies to reduce sundowning behaviors. The nurse also identifies caregiver role strain and develops a plan of care for Sam.

Mary goes to adult day care where the nurse implements strategies to promote calm and well- being for the clients. Mary develops urosepsis and is admitted to acute care, where the nurse responds to her hostile behavior. After Mary receives an antipsychotic medication, she becomes hypotensive and the nurse responds.

When Mary is discharged, the interdisciplinary team provides home health care. The nurse offers support when Sam grieves over Mary’s worsening condition.

Points that you can’t miss

1- Explain early sings, risk factors, complications, and nursing interventions for Alzheimer’s Disease.

2- Explain the purpose of the lad test, PET, and MRI.

3- Uses for trazodone and donepezil adverse reactions and contraindications.

4- What is Distorted thought processes and how to promote cognitive restructuring.

5- How to provide home care to patients with Alzheimer’s disease.

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