Chapter 65 Nursing School Test Banks

 

1.

A patient is brought to the ER following a motor vehicle accident in which he sustained head trauma. Preliminary assessment reveals a vision deficit in the patients left eye. The nurse should associate this abnormal finding with trauma to which of the following cerebral lobes?

A)

Temporal

B)

Occipital

C)

Parietal

D)

Frontal

Ans:

B

Feedback:

The posterior lobe of the cerebral hemisphere is responsible for visual interpretation. The temporal lobe contains the auditory receptive areas. The parietal lobe contains the primary sensory cortex, and is essential to an individuals awareness of the body in space, as well as orientation in space and spatial relations. The frontal lobe functions in concentration, abstract thought, information storage or memory, and motor function.

2.

A patient scheduled for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has arrived at the radiology department. The nurse who prepares the patient for the MRI should prioritize which of the following actions?

A)

Withholding stimulants 24 to 48 hours prior to exam

B)

Removing all metal-containing objects

C)

Instructing the patient to void prior to the MRI

D)

Initiating an IV line for administration of contrast

Ans:

B

Feedback:

Patient preparation for an MRI consists of removing all metal-containing objects prior to the examination. Withholding stimulants would not affect an MRI; this relates to an electroencephalography (EEG). Instructing the patient to void is patient preparation for a lumbar puncture. Initiating an IV line for administration of contrast would be done if the patient was having a CT scan with contrast.

3.

A gerontologic nurse planning the neurologic assessment of an older adult is considering normal, age-related changes. Of what phenomenon should the nurse be aware?

A)

Hyperactive deep tendon reflexes

B)

Reduction in cerebral blood flow

C)

Increased cerebral metabolism

D)

Hypersensitivity to painful stimuli

Ans:

B

Feedback:

Reduction in cerebral blood flow (CBF) is a change that occurs in the normal aging process. Deep tendon reflexes can be decreased or, in some cases, absent. Cerebral metabolism decreases as the patient advances in age. Reaction to painful stimuli may be decreased with age. Because pain is an important warning signal, caution must be used when hot or cold packs are used.

4.

The nurse has admitted a new patient to the unit. One of the patients admitting orders is for an adrenergic medication. The nurse knows that this medication will have what effect on the circulatory system?

A)

Thin, watery saliva

B)

Increased heart rate

C)

Decreased BP

D)

Constricted bronchioles

Ans:

B

Feedback:

The term adrenergic refers to the sympathetic nervous system. Sympathetic effects include an increased rate and force of the heartbeat. Cholinergic effects, which correspond to the parasympathetic division of the autonomic nervous system, include thin, watery saliva, decreased rate and force of heartbeat, and decreased BP.

5.

A nurse is assessing reflexes in a patient with hyperactive reflexes. When the patients foot is abruptly dorsiflexed, it continues to beat two to three times before settling into a resting position. How would the nurse document this finding?

A)

Rigidity

B)

Flaccidity

C)

Clonus

D)

Ataxia

Ans:

C

Feedback:

When reflexes are very hyperactive, a phenomenon called clonus may be elicited. If the foot is abruptly dorsiflexed, it may continue to beat two to three times before it settles into a position of rest. Rigidity is an increase in muscle tone at rest characterized by increased resistance to passive stretch. Flaccidity is lack of muscle tone. Ataxia is the inability to coordinate muscle movements, resulting in difficulty walking, talking, and performing self-care activities.

6.

The nurse is doing an initial assessment on a patient newly admitted to the unit with a diagnosis of cerebrovascular accident (CVA). The patient has difficulty copying a figure that the nurse has drawn and is diagnosed with visual-receptive aphasia. What brain region is primarily involved in this deficit?

A)

Temporal lobe

B)

Parietal-occipital area

C)

Inferior posterior frontal areas

D)

Posterior frontal area

Ans:

B

Feedback:

Difficulty copying a figure that the nurse has drawn would be considered visual-receptive aphasia, which involves the parietal-occipital area. Expressive aphasia, the inability to express oneself, is often associated with damage to the frontal area. Receptive aphasia, the inability to understand what someone else is saying, is often associated with damage to the temporal lobe area.

7.

What term is used to describe the fibrous connective tissue that hugs the brain closely and extends into every fold of the brains surface?

A)

Dura mater

B)

Arachnoid

C)

Fascia

D)

Pia mater

Ans:

D

Feedback:

The term meninges describes the fibrous connective tissue that covers the brain and spinal cord. The meninges have three layers, the dura mater, arachnoid, and pia mater. The pia mater is the innermost membrane that hugs the brain closely and extends into every fold of the brains surface. The dura mater, the outermost layer, covers the brain and spinal cord. The arachnoid, the middle membrane, is responsible for the production of cerebrospinal fluid.

8.

The nurse is caring for a patient with an upper motor neuron lesion. What clinical manifestations should the nurse anticipate when planning the patients neurologic assessment?

A)

Decreased muscle tone

B)

Flaccid paralysis

C)

Loss of voluntary control of movement

D)

Slow reflexes

Ans:

C

Feedback:

Upper motor neuron lesions do not cause muscle atrophy, flaccid paralysis, or slow reflexes. However, upper motor neuron lesions normally cause loss of voluntary control.

9.

The nurse is admitting a patient to the unit who is diagnosed with a lower motor neuron lesion. What entry in the patients electronic record is most consistent with this diagnosis?

A)

Patient exhibits increased muscle tone.

B)

Patient demonstrates normal muscle structure with no evidence of atrophy.

C)

Patient demonstrates hyperactive deep tendon reflexes.

D)

Patient demonstrates an absence of deep tendon reflexes.

Ans:

D

Feedback:

Lower motor neuron lesions cause flaccid muscle paralysis, muscle atrophy, decreased muscle tone, and loss of voluntary control.

10.

An elderly patient is being discharged home. The patient lives alone and has atrophy of his olfactory organs. The nurse tells the patients family that it is essential that the patient have what installed in the home?

A)

Grab bars

B)

Nonslip mats

C)

Baseboard heaters

D)

A smoke detector

Ans:

D

Feedback:

The sense of smell deteriorates with age. The olfactory organs are responsible for smell. This may present a safety hazard for the patient because he or she may not smell smoke or gas leaks. Smoke detectors are universally necessary, but especially for this patient.

11.

The patient in the ED has just had a diagnostic lumbar puncture. To reduce the incidence of a post-lumbar puncture headache, what is the nurses most appropriate action?

A)

Position the patient prone.

B)

Position the patient supine with the head of bed flat.

C)

Position the patient left side-lying.

D)

Administer acetaminophen as ordered.

Ans:

A

Feedback:

The lumbar puncture headache may be avoided if a small-gauge needle is used and if the patient remains prone after the procedure. Acetaminophen is not administered as a preventative measure for post-lumbar puncture headaches.

12.

The nurse is conducting a focused neurologic assessment. When assessing the patients cranial nerve function, the nurse would include which of the following assessments?

A)

Assessment of hand grip

B)

Assessment of orientation to person, time, and place

C)

Assessment of arm drift

D)

Assessment of gag reflex

Ans:

D

Feedback:

The gag reflex is governed by the glossopharyngeal nerve, one of the cranial nerves. Hand grip and arm drifting are part of motor function assessment. Orientation is an assessment parameter related to a mental status examination.

13.

A nurse is caring for a patient diagnosed with Mnires disease. While completing a neurologic examination on the patient, the nurse assesses cranial nerve VIII. The nurse would be correct in identifying the function of this nerve as what?

A)

Movement of the tongue

B)

Visual acuity

C)

Sense of smell

D)

Hearing and equilibrium

Ans:

D

Feedback:

Cranial nerve VIII (acoustic) is responsible for hearing and equilibrium. Cranial nerve XII (hypoglossal) is responsible for movement of the tongue. Cranial nerve II (optic) is responsible for visual acuity and visual fields. Cranial nerve I (olfactory) functions in sense of smell.

14.

A patient exhibiting an uncoordinated gait has presented at the clinic. Which of the following is the most plausible cause of this patients health problem?

A)

Cerebellar dysfunction

B)

A lesion in the pons

C)

Dysfunction of the medulla

D)

A hemorrhage in the midbrain

Ans:

A

Feedback:

The cerebellum controls fine movement, balance, position sense, and integration of sensory input. Portions of the pons control the heart, respiration, and blood pressure. Cranial nerves IX through XII connect to the brain in the medulla. Cranial nerves III and IV originate in the midbrain.

15.

The nursing students are learning how to assess function of cranial nerve VIII. To assess the function of cranial nerve VIII the students would be correct in completing which of the following assessment techniques?

A)

Have the patient identify familiar odors with the eyes closed.

B)

Assess papillary reflex.

C)

Utilize the Snellen chart.

D)

Test for air and bone conduction (Rinne test).

Ans:

D

Feedback:

Cranial nerve VIII is the acoustic nerve. It functions in hearing and equilibrium. When assessing this nerve, the nurse would test for air and bone conduction (Rinne) with a tuning fork. Assessment of papillary reflex would be completed for cranial nerves III (oculomotor), IV (trochlear), and VI (abducens). The Snellen chart would be used to assess cranial nerve II (optic).

16.

A patient is being given a medication that stimulates her parasympathetic system. Following administration of this medication, the nurse should anticipate what effect?

A)

Constricted pupils

B)

Dilated bronchioles

C)

Decreased peristaltic movement

D)

Relaxed muscular walls of the urinary bladder

Ans:

A

Feedback:

Parasympathetic stimulation results in constricted pupils, constricted bronchioles, increased peristaltic movement, and contracted muscular walls of the urinary bladder.

17.

A patient with lower back pain is scheduled for myelography using metrizamide (a water-soluble contrast dye). After the test, the nurse should prioritize what action?

A)

Positioning the patient with the head of the bed elevated 45 degrees

B)

Administering IV morphine sulfate to prevent headache

C)

Limiting fluids for the next 12 hours

D)

Helping the patient perform deep breathing and coughing exercises

Ans:

A

Feedback:

After myelography, the patient lies in bed with the head of the bed elevated 30 to 45 degrees. The patient is advised to remain in bed in the recommended position for 3 hours or as prescribed. Drinking liberal amounts of fluid for rehydration and replacement of CSF may decrease the incidence of postlumbar puncture headache. Deep breathing and coughing exercises are not normally necessary since there is no consequent risk of atelectasis.

18.

A patient is having a fight or flight response after receiving bad news about his prognosis. What affect will this have on the patients sympathetic nervous system?

A)

Constriction of blood vessels in the heart muscle

B)

Constriction of bronchioles

C)

Increase in the secretion of sweat

D)

Constriction of pupils

Ans:

C

Feedback:

Sympathetic nervous system stimulation results in dilated blood vessels in the heart and skeletal muscle, dilated bronchioles, increased secretion of sweat, and dilated pupils.

19.

The nurse educator is reviewing the assessment of cranial nerves. What should the educator identify as the specific instances when cranial nerves should be assessed? Select all that apply.

A)

When a neurogenic bladder develops

B)

When level of consciousness is decreased

C)

With brain stem pathology

D)

In the presence of peripheral nervous system disease

E)

When a spinal reflex is interrupted

Ans:

B, C, D

Feedback:

Cranial nerves are assessed when level of consciousness is decreased, with brain stem pathology, or in the presence of peripheral nervous system disease. Abnormalities in muscle tone and involuntary movements are less likely to prompt the assessment of cranial nerves, since these nerves do not directly mediate most aspects of muscle tone and movement.

20.

A patient in the OR goes into malignant hyperthermia due to an abnormal reaction to the anesthetic. The nurse knows that the area of the brain that regulates body temperature is which of the following?

A)

Cerebellum

B)

Thalamus

C)

Hypothalamus

D)

Midbrain

Ans:

C

Feedback:

The hypothalamus plays an important role in the endocrine system because it regulates the pituitary secretion of hormones that influence metabolism, reproduction, stress response, and urine production. It works with the pituitary to maintain fluid balance through hormonal release and maintains temperature regulation by promoting vasoconstriction or vasodilatation. The cerebellum, thalamus, and midbrain and not directly involved in temperature regulation.

21.

The nurse is planning the care of a patient with Parkinsons disease. The nurse should be aware that treatment will focus on what pathophysiological phenomenon?

A)

Premature degradation of acetylcholine

B)

Decreased availability of dopamine

C)

Insufficient synthesis of epinephrine

D)

Delayed reuptake of serotonin

Ans:

B

Feedback:

Parkinsons disease develops from decreased availability of dopamine, not acetylcholine, epinephrine, or serotonin.

22.

A patient is admitted to the medical unit with an exacerbation of multiple sclerosis. When assessing this patient, the nurse has the patient stick out her tongue and move it back and forth. What is the nurse assessing?

A)

Function of the hypoglossal nerve

B)

Function of the vagus nerve

C)

Function of the spinal nerve

D)

Function of the trochlear nerve

Ans:

A

Feedback:

The hypoglossal nerve is the 12th cranial nerve. It is responsible for movement of the tongue. None of the other listed nerves affects motor function in the tongue.

23.

A trauma patient was admitted to the ICU with a brain injury. The patient had a change in level of consciousness, increased vital signs, and became diaphoretic and agitated. The nurse should recognize which of the following syndromes as the most plausible cause of these symptoms?

A)

Adrenal crisis

B)

Hypothalamic collapse

C)

Sympathetic storm

D)

Cranial nerve deficit

Ans:

C

Feedback:

Sympathetic storm is a syndrome associated with changes in level of consciousness, altered vital signs, diaphoresis, and agitation that may result from hypothalamic stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system following traumatic brain injury. Alterations in cranial nerve or adrenal function would not have this result.

24.

Assessment is crucial to the care of patients with neurologic dysfunction. What does accurate and appropriate assessment require? Select all that apply.

A)

The ability to select mediations for the neurologic dysfunction

B)

Understanding of the tests used to diagnose neurologic disorders

C)

Knowledge of nursing interventions related to assessment and diagnostic testing

D)

Knowledge of the anatomy of the nervous system

E)

The ability to interpret the results of diagnostic tests

Ans:

B, C, D

Feedback:

Assessment requires knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the nervous system and an understanding of the array of tests and procedures used to diagnose neurologic disorders. Knowledge about the nursing implications and interventions related to assessment and diagnostic testing is also essential. Selecting medications and interpreting diagnostic tests are beyond the normal scope of the nurse.

25.

When caring for a patient with an altered level of consciousness, the nurse is preparing to test cranial nerve VII. What assessment technique would the nurse use to elicit a response from cranial nerve VII?

A)

Palpate trapezius muscle while patient shrugs should against resistance.

B)

Administer the whisper or watch-tick test.

C)

Observe for facial movement symmetry, such as a smile.

D)

Note any hoarseness in the patients voice.

Ans:

C

Feedback:

Cranial nerve VII is the facial nerve. An appropriate assessment technique for this cranial nerve would include observing for symmetry while the patient performs facial movements: smiles, whistles, elevates eyebrows, and frowns. Palpating and noting strength of the trapezius muscle while the patient shrugs shoulders against resistance would be completed to assess cranial nerve XI (spinal accessory). Assessing cranial nerve VIII (acoustic) would involve using the whisper or watch-tick test to evaluate hearing. Noting any hoarseness in the patients voice would involve assessment of cranial nerve X (vagus).

26.

The nurse is caring for a patient who exhibits abnormal results of the Weber test and Rinne test. The nurse should suspect dysfunction involving what cranial nerve?

A)

Trigeminal

B)

Acoustic

C)

Hypoglossal

D)

Trochlear

Ans:

B

Feedback:

Abnormal hearing can correlate with damage to cranial nerve VIII (acoustic). The acoustic nerve functions in hearing and equilibrium. The trigeminal nerve functions in facial sensation, corneal reflex, and chewing. The hypoglossal nerve moves the tongue. The trochlear nerve controls muscles that move the eye.

27.

The nurse caring for an 80 year-old patient knows that she has a pre-existing history of dulled tactile sensation. The nurse should first consider what possible cause for this patients diminished tactile sensation?

A)

Damage to cranial nerve VIII

B)

Adverse medication effects

C)

Age-related neurologic changes

D)

An undiagnosed cerebrovascular accident in early adulthood

Ans:

C

Feedback:

Tactile sensation is dulled in the elderly person due to a decrease in the number of sensory receptors. While thorough assessment is necessary, it is possible that this change is unrelated to pathophysiological processes.

28.

A 72-year-old man has been brought to his primary care provider by his daughter, who claims that he has been experiencing uncharacteristic lapses in memory. What principle should underlie the nurses assessment and management of this patient?

A)

Loss of short-term memory is normal in older adults, but loss of long-term memory is pathologic.

B)

Lapses in memory in older adults are considered benign unless they have negative consequences.

C)

Gradual increases in confusion accompany the aging process.

D)

Thorough assessment is necessary because changes in cognition are always considered to be pathologic.

Ans:

D

Feedback:

Although mental processing time decreases with age, memory, language, and judgment capacities remain intact. Change in mental status should never be assumed to be a normal part of aging.

29.

A gerontologic nurse educator is providing practice guidelines to unlicensed care providers. Because reaction to painful stimuli is sometimes blunted in older adults, what must be used with caution?

A)

Hot or cold packs

B)

Analgesics

C)

Anti-inflammatory medications

D)

Whirlpool baths

Ans:

A

Feedback:

Reaction to painful stimuli may be decreased with age. Because pain is an important warning signal, caution must be used when hot or cold packs are used. The older patient may be burned or suffer frostbite before being aware of any discomfort. Any medication is used with caution in the elderly, but not because of the decreased sense of heat or cold. Whirlpool baths are generally not a routine treatment ordered for the elderly.

30.

A trauma patient in the ICU has been declared brain dead. What diagnostic test is used in making the determination of brain death?

A)

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)

B)

Electroencephalography (EEG)

C)

Electromyelography (EMG)

D)

Computed tomography (CT)

Ans:

B

Feedback:

The EEG can be used in determining brain death. MRI, CT, and EMG are not normally used in determining brain death.

31.

A patient is scheduled for CT scanning of the head because of a recent onset of neurologic deficits. What should the nurse tell the patient in preparation for this test?

A)

No metal objects can enter the procedure room.

B)

You need to fast for 8 hours prior to the test.

C)

You will need to lie still throughout the procedure.

D)

There will be a lot of noise during the test.

Ans:

C

Feedback:

Preparation for CT scanning includes teaching the patient about the need to lie quietly throughout the procedure. If the patient were having an MRI, metal and noise would be appropriate teaching topics. There is no need to fast prior to a CT scan of the brain.

32.

A patient for whom the nurse is caring has positron emission tomography (PET) scheduled. In preparation, what should the nurse explain to the patient?

A)

The test will temporarily limit blood flow through the brain.

B)

An allergy to iodine precludes getting the radio-opaque dye.

C)

The patient will need to endure loud noises during the test.

D)

The test may result in dizziness or lightheadedness.

Ans:

D

Feedback:

Key nursing interventions for PET scan include explaining the test and teaching the patient about inhalation techniques and the sensations (e.g., dizziness, light-headedness, and headache) that may occur. A PET scan does not impede blood flow through the brain. An allergy to iodine precludes the dye for an MRI, and loud noise is heard in an MRI.

33.

A patient is scheduled for a myelogram and the nurse explains to the patient that this is an invasive procedure, which assesses for any lesions in the spinal cord. The nurse should explain that the preparation is similar to which of the following neurologic tests?

A)

Lumbar puncture

B)

MRI

C)

Cerebral angiography

D)

EEG

Ans:

A

Feedback:

A myelogram is an x-ray of the spinal subarachnoid space taken after the injection of a contrast agent into the spinal subarachnoid space through a lumbar puncture. Patient preparation for a myelogram would be similar to that for lumbar puncture. The other listed diagnostic tests do not involve lumbar puncture.

34.

The physician has ordered a somatosensory evoked responses (SERs) test for a patient for whom the nurse is caring. The nurse is justified in suspecting that this patient may have a history of what type of neurologic disorder?

A)

Hypothalamic disorder

B)

Demyelinating disease

C)

Brainstem deficit

D)

Diabetic neuropathy

Ans:

B

Feedback:

SERs are used to detect deficits in the spinal cord or peripheral nerve conduction and to monitor spinal cord function during surgical procedures. The test is also useful in the diagnosis of demyelinating diseases, such as multiple sclerosis and polyneuropathies, where nerve conduction is slowed. The test is not done to diagnose hypothalamic disorders, brainstem deficits, or diabetic neuropathies.

35.

A patient had a lumbar puncture performed at the outpatient clinic and the nurse has phoned the patient and family that evening. What does this phone call enable the nurse to determine?

A)

What are the patients and familys expectations of the test

B)

Whether the patients family had any questions about why the test was necessary

C)

Whether the patient has had any complications of the test

D)

Whether the patient understood accurately why the test was done

Ans:

C

Feedback:

Contacting the patient and family after diagnostic testing enables the nurse to determine whether they have any questions about the procedure or whether the patient had any untoward results. The other listed information should have been elicited from the patient and family prior to the test.

36.

A patient is currently being stimulated by the parasympathetic nervous system. What effect will this nervous stimulation have on the patients bladder?

A)

The parasympathetic nervous system causes urinary retention.

B)

The parasympathetic nervous system causes bladder spasms.

C)

The parasympathetic nervous system causes urge incontinence.

D)

The parasympathetic nervous system makes the bladder contract.

Ans:

D

Feedback:

The parasympathetic division of the nervous system causes contraction (stimulation) of the urinary bladder muscles and a decrease (inhibition) in heart rate, whereas the sympathetic division produces relaxation (inhibition) of the urinary bladder and an increase (stimulation) in the rate and force of the heartbeat.

37.

The nurse is performing a neurologic assessment of a patient whose injuries have rendered her unable to follow verbal commands. How should the nurse proceed with assessing the patients level of consciousness (LOC)?

A)

Assess the patients vital signs and correlate these with the patients baselines.

B)

Assess the patients eye opening and response to stimuli.

C)

Document that the patient currently lacks a level of consciousness.

D)

Facilitate diagnostic testing in an effort to obtain objective data.

Ans:

B

Feedback:

If the patient is not alert or able to follow commands, the examiner observes for eye opening; verbal response and motor response to stimuli, if any; and the type of stimuli needed to obtain a response. Vital signs and diagnostic testing are appropriate, but neither will allow the nurse to gauge the patients LOC. Inability to follow commands does not necessarily denote an absolute lack of consciousness.

38.

In the course of a focused neurologic assessment, the nurse is palpating the patients major muscle groups at rest and during passive movement. Data gleaned from this assessment will allow the nurse to describe which of the following aspects of neurologic function?

A)

Muscle dexterity

B)

Muscle tone

C)

Motor symmetry

D)

Deep tendon reflexes

Ans:

B

Feedback:

Muscle tone (the tension present in a muscle at rest) is evaluated by palpating various muscle groups at rest and during passive movement. Data from this assessment do not allow the nurse to ascertain the patients dexterity, reflexes, or motor symmetry.

39.

The neurologic nurse is testing the function of a patients cerebellum and basal ganglia. What action will most accurately test these structures?

A)

Have the patient identify the location of a cotton swab on his or her skin with the eyes closed.

B)

Elicit the patients response to a hypothetical problem.

C)

Ask the patient to close his or her eyes and discern between hot and cold stimuli.

D)

Guide the patient through the performance of rapid, alternating movements.

Ans:

D

Feedback:

Cerebellar and basal ganglia influence on the motor system is reflected in balance control and coordination. Coordination in the hands and upper extremities is tested by having the patient perform rapid, alternating movements and point-to-point testing. The cerebellum and basal ganglia do not mediate cutaneous sensation or judgment.

40.

During the performance of the Romberg test, the nurse observes that the patient sways slightly. What is the nurses most appropriate action?

A)

Facilitate a referral to a neurologist.

B)

Reposition the patient supine to ensure safety.

C)

Document successful completion of the assessment.

D)

Follow up by having the patient perform the Rinne test.

Ans:

C

Feedback:

Slight swaying during the Romberg test is normal, but a loss of balance is abnormal and is considered a positive Romberg test. Slight swaying is not a significant threat to the patients safety. The Rinne test assesses hearing, not balance.

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