Impulsivity, compulsivity, and addiction are challenging disorders for patients across the life span. Impulsivity is the inclination to act upon sudden urges or desires without considering potential consequences; patients often describe impulsivity as living in the present moment without regard to the future (MentalHelp.net, n.d.). Thus, these disorders often manifest as negative behaviors, resulting in adverse outcomes for patients. For example, compulsivity represents a behavior that an individual feels driven to perform to relieve anxiety (MentalHelp.net, n.d.). The presence of these behaviors often results in addiction, which represents the process of the transition from impulsive to compulsive behavior.
In your role as the psychiatric nurse practitioner (PNP), you have the opportunity to help patients address underlying causes of the disorders and overcome these behaviors. For this Assignment, as you examine the client case study in this week’s Learning Resources, consider how you might assess and treat clients presenting with impulsivity, compulsivity, and addiction.
Reference: MentalHelp.net. (n.d.). Impaired decision-making, impulsivity, and compulsivity: Addictions’ effect on the cerebral cortex. https://www.mentalhelp.net/addiction/impulsivity-and-compulsivity-addictions-effect-on-the-cerebral-cortex/
Examine Case Study: A Puerto Rican Woman With Comorbid Addiction. You will be asked to make three decisions concerning the medication to prescribe to this client. Be sure to consider factors that might impact the client’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)
Decision #1 (1 page)
Decision #2 (1 page)
Decision #3 (1 page)
Conclusion (1 page)
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.
Impulsivity and compulsivity have a wide range of clinical presentations and often overlap with many other psychiatric disorders. Some individuals act without forethought and have difficulty saying “no” to certain things, such as using illicit drugs or spending money, whereas other individuals engage in compulsive behaviors with undesirable consequences. In some cases, these impulsive and compulsive behaviors also fuel issues with addiction. To effectively assess and treat patients, you must understand how these disorders differ as well as how their symptoms impact patients and their families.
This week, as you examine therapies for individuals with impulsivity, compulsivity, and addiction, you explore the assessment and treatment of patients with these disorders. You also consider ethical and legal implications of these therapies.
Required Readings (click to expand/reduce)
Kelly, J. E., & Renner, J. A. (2016). Alcohol-Related disorders. In T. A. Stern, M. Favo, T. E. Wilens, & J. F. Rosenbaum. (Eds.), Massachusetts General Hospital psychopharmacology and neurotherapeutics (pp. 163–182). Elsevier.
Renner, J. A., & Ward, N. (2016). Drug addiction. In T. A. Stern, M. Favo, T. E. Wilens, & J. F. Rosenbaum. (Eds.), Massachusetts General Hospital psychopharmacology and neurotherapeutics (pp. 163–182). Elsevier.
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (1999). Treatment of adolescents with substance use disorders: Treatment improvement protocol series, no. 32. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK64350/
Chapter 1, “Substance Use Among Adolescents”
Chapter 2, “Tailoring Treatment to the Adolescent’s Problem”
Chapter 7, “Youths with Distinctive Treatment Needs”
University of Michigan Health System. (2016). Childhood trauma linked to worse impulse control. Journal of Psychosocial Nursing & Mental Health Services, 54(4), 15.
Grant, J. E., Odlaug, B. L., & Schreiber, L. N. (2014). Pharmacological treatments in pathological gambling. British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, 77(2), 375–381. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2125.2012.04457.x
Hulvershorn, L. A., Schroeder, K. M., Wink, L. K., Erickson, C. A., & McDougle, C. J. (2015). Psychopharmacologic treatment of children prenatally exposed to drugs of abuse. Human Psychopharmacology, 30(3), 164–172. https://doi.org/10.1002/hup.2467
Loreck, D., Brandt, N. J., & DiPaula, B. (2016). Managing opioid abuse in older adults: Clinical considerations and challenges. Journal of Gerontological Nursing, 42(4), 10–15. https://doi.org/10.3928/00989134-20160314-04
Salmon, J. M., & Forester, B. (2012). Substance abuse and co-occurring psychiatric disorders in older adults: A clinical case and review of the relevant literature. Journal of Dual Diagnosis, 8(1), 74–84. https://doi.org/10.1080/15504263.2012.648439
Sanches, M., Scott-Gurnell, K., Patel, A., Caetano, S. C., Zunta-Soares, G. B., Hatch, J. P., Olvera, R., Swann, A. C., & Soares, J. C. (2014). Impulsivity in children and adolescents with mood disorders and unaffected offspring of bipolar parents. Comprehensive Psychiatry, 55(6), 1337–1341. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.comppsych.2014.04.018
Medication Resources (click to expand/reduce)
IBM Corporation. (2020). IBM Micromedex. https://www.micromedexsolutions.com/micromedex2/librarian/deeplinkaccess?source=deepLink&institution=SZMC%5ESZMC%5ET43537
Note: To access the following medications, use the IBM Micromedex resource. Type the name of each medication in the keyword search bar. Be sure to read all sections on the left navigation bar related to each medication’s result page, as this information will be helpful for your review in preparation for your Assignments.
Required Media (click to expand/reduce)
Case Study: A Puerto Rican Woman with Comorbid Addiction
Note: This case study will serve as the foundation for this week’s Assignment.
Optional Resources (click to expand/reduce)
Lupi, M., Martinotti, G., Acciavatti, T., Pettorruso, M., Brunetti, M., Santacroce, R., Cinose, E., Di Iorio, G., Di Nicola, M., & Di Giannantonio, M. (2014). Pharmacological treatments in gambling disorder: A qualitative review. Biomed Research International, 2014. https://doi.org/10.1155/2014/537306
Mrs. Maria Perez is a 53 year old Puerto Rican female who presents today due to a rather “embarrassing problem.”
Mrs. Perez admits that she has had “problems” with alcohol since her father died in her late teens. She reports that she has struggled with alcohol since her 20’s and has been involved with Alcoholics Anonymous “on and off” for the past 25 years. She states that for the past 2 years, she has been having more and more difficulty maintaining her sobriety since the opening of the new “Rising Sun” casino near her home. Mrs. Perez states that she and a friend went to visit the new casino during its grand opening at which point she was “hooked.” She states that she gets “such a high” when she is gambling. While gambling, she “enjoys a drink or two” to help calm her during high-stakes games. She states that this often gives way to more drinking and more reckless gambling. She also reports that her cigarette smoking has increased over the past 2 years and she is concerned about the negative effects of the cigarette smoking on her health.
She states that she attempts to abstain from drinking but she gets such a “high” from the act of gambling that she needs a few drinks to “even out.” She also notices that when she drinks, she doesn’t smoke “as much,” but she enjoys smoking when she is playing at the slot machines. She also reports that she has gained weight from drinking so much. She currently weights 122 lbs., which represents a 7 lb. weight gain from her usual 115 lb. weight.
Mrs. Perez is quite concerned today because she borrowed over $50,000 from her retirement account to pay off her gambling debts, and her husband does not know.
MENTAL STATUS EXAM
The client is a 53 year old Puerto Rican female who is alert and oriented to person, place, time, and event. She is dressed appropriately for the weather and time of year. Her speech is clear, coherent, and goal directed. Her eye contact is somewhat avoidant during the clinical interview. When you make eye contact with her, she looks away or looks down. She demonstrates no noteworthy mannerisms, gestures, or tics. Her self-reported mood is “sad.” Affect is appropriate to content of conversation and self-reported mood. She denies visual or auditory hallucinations, and no delusional or paranoid thought processes are readily appreciated. Insight and judgment are grossly intact; however, impulse control is impaired. She is currently denying suicidal or homicidal ideation.
Diagnosis: Gambling disorder, alcohol use disorder
Decision Point One
Vivitrol (naltrexone) injection, 380 mg intramuscularly in the gluteal region every 4 weeksAntabuse (disulfiram) 250 mg orally dailyCampral (acamprosate) 666 mg orally three times/day
Decision Point One
Vivitrol (naltrexone) injection, 380 mg intramuscularly in the gluteal region every 4 weeks
RESULTS OF DECISION POINT ONE
Decision Point Two
Add on Valium (diazepam) 5 mg orally TID/PRN/anxiety
RESULTS OF DECISION POINT TWO
Decision Point Three
Continue current dose of Vivitrol, increase Valium to 10 mg orally TID/PRN/anxiety. Refer to counseling for her ongoing gambling issue
Guidance to Student
Anxiety is a common side effect of Vivitrol. Mrs. Perez reports that she is doing well with this medication, and like other side effects, the anxiety associated with this medication may be transient. The psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner should never initiate benzodiazepines in a client who already has issues with alcohol, or other substance dependencies. Additionally, benzodiazepines are not to be used long-term. Problems associated with long-term benzodiazepine use include the need to increase the dose in order to achieve the same therapeutic effect. This is what we are seeing in Mrs. Perez’s case.
The most appropriate course of action in this case would be to continue the current dose of Vivitrol, while decreasing the Valium with the goal of discontinuation of the drug within the next two weeks. At that point, you would need to evaluate whether or not the side effect of anxiety associated with Vivitrol persists.
Increasing the dose of Valium would not be appropriate, neither would maintaining her on the current dose of Valium. Additionally, the client should be referred for counseling to help with her gambling addiction, as there are no FDA approved medications gambling disorder.
Medication should never be added treat side effect of another medication, unless that side effect is known to be transient (for instance, benzodiazepines are sometimes prescribed to overcome the initial problem of “activation” associated with initiation of SSRI, or SNRI therapy). However, in a client with multiple addictive disorders, benzodiazepines should never be used (unless they are only being used for a limited duration of therapy such as acute alcohol detoxification to prevent seizures).
Additionally, it should be noted that Mrs. Perez continues to engage in problematic gambling, at considerable personal financial cost. Mrs. Perez needs to be referred to a counselor who specializes in the treatment of gambling disorder, and should also be encouraged to establish herself with a local chapter of gamblers anonymous.
You need to discuss smoking cessation options with Mrs. Perez in order to address the totality of addictions, and to enhance her overall health.
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