Feel free to use these questions elsewhere, but please credit me by linking back to this site. Answer key with rationales found below.
- The nurse is caring for a thirty year old female patient who lives on her own and is recovering from a comminuted fracture of her left tibia. The client states, “I hate that I can’t get up and walk by myself to go to the bathroom!” The nurse uses the therapeutic response of sharing empathy by saying:
- “Don’t worry, you’ll be up and walking before you know it.”
- “Keep your chin up!”
- “It must be frustrating to have been so independent and suddenly have to depend on other people to care for you”
- “I’m sorry this happened to you.”
- The nurse witnesses a patient exhibiting facial grimacing. When asked to rate their current pain level, the patient states, “Oh, I’m fine right now.” What is the nurse’s best response?
- Document that the patient reports he is not in any pain
- “You say that you feel fine, but you’re grimacing like you’re in pain.”
- “It’s not good to hide your pain from me like that.”
- “Why do you say you’re fine when you’re grimacing like that?”
- The daughter of an elderly patient tells the hospice nurse “I want to cry every time I visit my mother.” The best response by the nurse is:
- “You feel sad that your mother will die soon.”
- “You should stay strong for her.”
- “I felt that way when my mother was in hospice care.”
- “Let’s talk about something else instead.”
1. Option 3 is correct. In showing empathy, the nurse should demonstrate understanding of the patient’s feelings. Option 1 is false reassurance and belittles the patient’s concerns. Option 2 demonstrates the use of a cliche, which is meaningless in the nurse-patient relationship. Option 4 demonstrates sympathy, which focuses more on the nurse’s feelings than the patient’s concerns.
2. Option 2 is correct. The nurse is demonstrating the therapeutic technique of confrontation by helping the patient be more aware of his inconsistency. Option 1 is incorrect because the patient is communicating he is in pain through nonverbal cues. Option 3 is incorrect because the nurse is demonstrating disapproval. Option 4 is incorrect because the nurse is requesting an explanation.
3. Option 1 is correct. It shows the therapeutic communication technique of reflecting, giving the family member back their feelings and ideas. Option 2 is a cliche and non-therapeutic. Option 3 focuses on the nurse, not the family member. Option 4 changes the subject and does not address the family member’s feelings.