Assignment: Assessing and treating adult clients and those with geriatric issues.
First, choose the right antidepressant medication. The selection of an antidepressant should be based on the patient’s symptoms, previous response to medication, comorbidities, and potential side effects. Due to the lower risk of side effects and their better tolerance, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), should be considered first-line therapy for depression in seniors.
In selecting the appropriate medication, it is essential to consider the patient’s pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes, which may be affected by factors such as age, ethnicity, weight, liver and kidney function, drug interactions, and genetic variability. Patients with kidney or liver impairment, for example, may need to adjust their doses to avoid adverse effects.
Second decision: This involves the determination of the proper dose and titration plan for the chosen medication. The dose should be individualized based on the patient’s response, tolerability, and potential drug interactions. Some antidepressants can interact with certain medications. Dosage adjustments might be required to reduce side effects or prevent toxic effects.
Monitoring the patient is vital when increasing the dose. Guidelines suggest increasing the dosage gradually in order to reduce side effects. The patient must be observed for at most four weeks to determine the therapeutic response.
Decision #3: The third decision involves monitoring the patient’s response to the medication and adjusting the dose or switching to a different medication if necessary. The response to medication may vary depending on the patient’s symptoms, comorbidities, and potential side effects. Guidelines suggest monitoring the patient for at least 12 weeks to evaluate the therapeutic response. If there are no improvements, another medication or combination therapy might be recommended.
In conclusion, when prescribing medication for major depressive disorder, it is essential to consider various factors such as the patient’s symptoms, comorbidities, potential side effects, and pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes. You should choose the appropriate medication, adjust gradually and monitor the patient closely for any adverse reactions and response. You may consider switching to a combination or another medication if you don’t see improvement.