[ANSWERED 2024] Post a brief explanation of the psychological disorder presented and the decision steps you applied in completing the interactive media piece for

Written By: Dan Palmer, RN

Post a brief explanation of the psychological disorder presented and the decision steps you applied in completing the interactive media

Post a brief explanation of the psychological disorder presented and the decision steps you applied in completing the interactive media

Decision Making When Treating Psychological Disorders 

Psychological disorders, such as depression, bipolar, and anxiety disorders can present several complications for patients of all ages. These disorders affect patients physically and emotionally, potentially impacting judgment, school and/or job performance, and relationships with family and friends. Since these disorders have many drastic effects on patients’ lives, it is important for advanced practice nurses to effectively manage patient care. With patient factors and medical history in mind, it is the advanced practice nurse’s responsibility to ensure the safe and effective diagnosis, treatment, and education of patients with psychological disorders.

For this Discussion, you will select an interactive media piece to practice decision making when treating patients with psychological disorders. You will recommend the most effective pharmacotherapeutic to treat the psychological disorder presented and examine potential impacts of pharmacotherapeutics on a patient’s pathophysiology.

  To Prepare

· Review this week’s interactive media pieces and select one to focus on for this Discussion.

· Reflect on the decision steps in the interactive media pieces, and consider the potential impacts from the administration of the associated pharmacotherapeutics on the patient’s pathophysiology.

  • Post a brief explanation of the psychological disorder presented and the decision steps you applied in completing the interactive media piece for the psychological disorder you selected.
  • Then, explain how the administration of the associated pharmacotherapeutics you recommended may impact the patient’s pathophysiology.
  • How might these potential impacts inform how you would suggest treatment plans for this patient?
  • Be specific and provide examples.

Expert Answer and Explanation

Brief Explanation of the Psychological Disorder and the Decision Steps Applied in Completing the Interactive Media Piece for the Disorder

Depression is one of the common mood disorders in which the affected patient has feels extreme sadness or emotional emptiness as a result of changes in their brain chemistry (Costantino, 2019). A 70 y.o. male pt. presents to the facility with complaints of depression and minor physical complaints of stiff shoulders, which he attributes to the fact that he works in a warehouse as a laborer doing heavy jobs. The subjective data indicates the presence of childhood abuse from peers, weight gain and insomnia.

In the mental status exam, he does not make direct eye contact, and has a depression score of 51, indicating severe depression. In decision point one, the patient is given Zoloft 25mg daily, decision point 2 includes a decrease of dosage to 25mg orally daily, and decision point three entails an increase of the dosage of the same drug to 25mg orally daily.

How the Administration of the Associated Pharmacotherapeutics Recommended May Impact the Patient’s Pathophysiology

The first administration of the drug contributes to the return of the patient in four weeks, a 25% decrease in the symptoms, but also leads to the development of a new disorder, erectile dysfunction. After decreasing the dosage by half, the ED subsides but the depressive symptoms still worsen (Buck et al., 2019). An increase in the dosage to the initial amount does not lead to any better situation, but the patient should be ready to change to another drug if the ED returns.

How the Potential Impacts Inform Me How I Would Suggest Treatment Plans

The potential impacts of the drugs show how adopting various lines of treatment plans may affect the patient. Since the patient is 70 years and may not have regular sex, it could be appropriate to take up the option of the Zoloft 25mg daily orally with the side effects of erectile dysfunction, as the effects would not be much on the life of the patient (Potter, 2019). However, I would include, in the treatment plan, a discussion with the patient, about the suitability of other drugs such as Paxil 20mg daily in the second level of treatment, which could have relatively lesser side effects while maintaining the reduction in the depression levels.


Buck, K., Zekri, S., Nguyen, L., & Ogar, U. J. (2019). Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Postpartum Depression. American family physician100(4), 244-245.

Costantino, C. (2019). Does Sertraline Decrease Depression In Patients Who Suffered A Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)?

Potter, D. R. (2019). Major Depression Disorder in Adults: A Review of Antidepressants. International Journal of Caring Sciences12(3), 1936.

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What is the first step in seeking professional help for a psychological disorder?

The first step in seeking professional help for a psychological disorder is typically to consult with a primary care physician or a general practitioner. Here are the general steps to take:

  1. Visit Your Primary Care Physician:
    • Schedule an appointment with your primary care physician (PCP).
    • Discuss your symptoms and concerns openly and honestly.
    • Your PCP can perform an initial assessment, rule out any potential physical health issues, and provide guidance on the next steps.
  2. Receive a Referral:
    • Based on the assessment, your PCP may refer you to a mental health professional, such as a psychiatrist, psychologist, or therapist.
    • If you have insurance, check with your insurance provider to understand coverage for mental health services and whether a referral is required.
  3. Consult a Mental Health Professional:
    • Schedule an appointment with the recommended mental health professional.
    • Share your thoughts, feelings, and experiences during the appointment to facilitate an accurate diagnosis.
  4. Diagnosis and Treatment Planning:
    • The mental health professional will conduct a comprehensive evaluation and provide a diagnosis (if applicable).
    • Together, you and the professional can discuss and develop a treatment plan, which may include therapy, medication, or a combination of both.
  5. Follow the Treatment Plan:
    • If therapy or counseling is recommended, attend sessions regularly and actively participate in the process.
    • If medication is prescribed, take it as directed by the mental health professional.
  6. Monitor Progress:
    • Keep open communication with your mental health professional about your progress and any challenges you may be facing.
    • Adjustments to the treatment plan may be made based on your response and needs.

What criteria are commonly used to determine whether a person might have a psychological disorder?

Mental health professionals use various criteria to determine whether a person might have a psychological disorder. The process involves a comprehensive assessment that considers multiple factors. Common criteria and assessment methods include:

  1. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM):
    • The DSM, published by the American Psychiatric Association, is widely used for diagnosing mental health disorders. It provides specific criteria and descriptions of various disorders.
  2. Clinical Interviews:
    • Mental health professionals conduct thorough interviews to gather information about a person’s thoughts, emotions, behaviors, and life experiences. These interviews help in understanding the individual’s symptoms and their impact on daily life.
  3. Observation:
    • Observing a person’s behavior in different settings can provide valuable insights into their mental health. This may involve assessing how they interact with others, handle stress, or manage daily tasks.
  4. Self-Report Questionnaires:
    • Individuals may be asked to complete standardized questionnaires that assess specific symptoms or traits associated with various psychological disorders. These questionnaires help in gathering subjective information about the individual’s experiences.
  5. Medical and Family History:
    • Information about an individual’s medical history, including any previous mental health diagnoses or treatments, is important. Family history of mental health issues can also provide context and contribute to the assessment.
  6. Psychological Testing:
    • Psychologists may use standardized tests to assess cognitive abilities, personality traits, and emotional functioning. Examples include intelligence tests, personality assessments, and projective tests.
  7. Functional Impairment:
    • Mental health professionals consider how symptoms impact an individual’s ability to function in various aspects of life, such as work, relationships, and daily activities. Significant impairment in these areas may be indicative of a psychological disorder.
  8. Duration and Persistence:
    • The duration and persistence of symptoms are important criteria. Mental health disorders are characterized by symptoms that persist over time and significantly affect a person’s functioning.
  9. Cultural Considerations:
    • Professionals take cultural factors into account when making assessments. Cultural norms and values can influence how symptoms are expressed and perceived.

What are the perspectives used to explain the causes of psychological disorders and their main difference?

The causes of psychological disorders are explained through various perspectives, each offering a unique framework for understanding mental health. These perspectives help mental health professionals conceptualize the origins of psychological disorders. Here are some key perspectives, each with its main differences:

  1. Biological Perspective:
    • Main Focus: Emphasizes the role of biological factors, such as genetics, brain structure and chemistry, and neurotransmitter imbalances, in the development of psychological disorders.
    • Key Points: Disorders may be linked to genetic predispositions, hormonal imbalances, or abnormalities in brain structure and function.
  2. Psychodynamic Perspective:
    • Main Focus: Rooted in Freudian theories, it highlights the influence of unconscious conflicts, unresolved childhood experiences, and defense mechanisms on the development of psychological disorders.
    • Key Points: Emphasizes the role of the unconscious mind and early life experiences in shaping personality and causing psychological distress.
  3. Behavioral Perspective:
    • Main Focus: Concentrates on observable behaviors and the impact of environmental stimuli, learning experiences, and reinforcement on the development of psychological disorders.
    • Key Points: Disorders may result from maladaptive learned behaviors, conditioning, or environmental factors that contribute to dysfunctional patterns.
  4. Cognitive Perspective:
    • Main Focus: Examines the role of cognitive processes, such as thoughts, perceptions, and beliefs, in the development and maintenance of psychological disorders.
    • Key Points: Disorders may stem from distorted thought patterns, negative self-perceptions, and dysfunctional cognitive processes.
  5. Humanistic Perspective:
    • Main Focus: Centers on the individual’s self-concept, self-esteem, and the pursuit of personal growth and self-actualization as factors contributing to mental well-being or disorders.
    • Key Points: Disorders may arise from obstacles in personal growth, self-awareness, and the fulfillment of one’s potential.
  6. Sociocultural Perspective:
    • Main Focus: Explores the impact of social, cultural, and environmental factors on the development and manifestation of psychological disorders.
    • Key Points: Societal norms, cultural expectations, socioeconomic factors, and the influence of family and community play a role in mental health.
  7. Biopsychosocial Model:
    • Main Focus: Integrates biological, psychological, and social factors to provide a holistic understanding of mental health and psychological disorders.
    • Key Points: Recognizes the interconnectedness of biological, psychological, and social influences in shaping mental health outcomes.



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