Chapter 18

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  1. Reticular Activating System (RAS)
    • A network of nerve cells in the brainstem that constantly transmit environmental and sensory stimuli to and from the cerebrum.
    • If this network is damaged or becomes dysfunctional, the patient will lose consciousness
  2. Altered Mental Status
    Significant indication of injury or illness in a patient
  3. Coma
    An unconscious state in which the patient does not respond to painful stimuli
  4. Structural Causes of Altered Mental Status
    • Brain tumor
    • Hemorrhage in the cranium but outside the brain
    • Hemorrhage in the brain tissue
    • Direct brain tissue damage from trauma to the brain
    • Degenerative disease of the brain
    • Brain abscess or infection
  5. Toxic-Metabolic Causes of Altered Mental Status
    • Severe hypoxia or anoxia
    • Abnormal blood glucose conditions
    • Liver failure
    • Kidney failure
    • Poisoning
  6. Other Causes of Altered Metal Status
    • Shock
    • Drugs that depress the central nervous system
    • Post seizure
    • Infection
    • Cardiac rhythm disturbance
    • Stroke
  7. Neurological Deficit
    Any deficiency in the functioning of the brain or nervous system

    Altered mental status, slurred or absent speech, paralysis, weakness, and numbness
  8. Stroke
    A sudden disruption in blood flow to the brain that results in brain cell damage. Caused by a blood clot obstructing a blood vessel in the brain or loss of continuity of the blood vessel
  9. Ischemic Stroke
    Blockage of an artery that is carrying blood to a specific area within the brain
  10. Hemorrhagic Shock
    Bleeding within the brain resulting from a ruptured cerebral artery
  11. Thrombotic Stroke
    A stroke resulting from thrombus formation

    Thrombus: clot that develops at the site of occlusion
  12. Embolic Stroke
    A clot or other matter that has travelled from another area of the body is called embolus. When the embolus lodges in a cerebral artery and occludes it, it is known as a cerebral embolism and results in an embolic stroke
  13. Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA)
    Signs and symptoms disappear without any obvious permanent neurological deficits

    Typically resolve within 1 to 2 hours may last up to 24 hours
  14. Cincinnati Prehospital Stroke Scale
    • Facial droop
    • Arm drift
    • Abnormal speech pattern and muscle paralysis
  15. Los Angeles Prehosipital Stroke Screen (LAPSS)
    • Age greater than 45
    • History of seizures or epilepsy
    • Duration of symptoms
    • Wheelchair or bedridden status
    • Blood glucose level
  16. Vascular Headaches
    Occurs as a result of dilation or distension of vessels or inflammation within the cranium
  17. Cluster Headaches
    The pain is usually found on only one side of the head or face in the temporal region or around the eye and is excruciating
  18. Tension Headaches
    Thought to be caused by contraction of the muscles of the neck and scalp. The pain is usually described as tight or viselike
  19. Organic, Traction, or Inflammatory Headaches
    A result of tumors, infection, stroke, or inflammatory disorders within the cranium such as meningitis, hemorrhagic stroke, and tumor
Card Set:
Chapter 18
2014-03-01 20:48:44

Altered Mental Status, Stroke, and Headache
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