NCLEX Practice Test for Medical Surgical Nursing

There will be three sets of NCLEX practice exam for medical surgical nursing and each will have at least 50 questions. We will be posting first all the questions and later on the corresponding answers and rationale.

1. Following surgery, Mario complains of mild incisional pain while performing deep- breathing and coughing exercises. The nurse’s best response would be:

A. “Pain will become less each day.”
B. “This is a normal reaction after surgery.”
C. “With a pillow, apply pressure against the incision.”
D. “I will give you the pain medication the physician ordered.”

2. The nurse needs to carefully assess the complaint of pain of the elderly because older people

A. are expected to experience chronic pain
B. have a decreased pain threshold
C. experience reduced sensory perception
D. have altered mental function

3. Mary received AtropineSO4 as a pre-medication 30 minutes ago and is now complaining of dry mouth and her PR is higher, than before the medication was administered. The nurse’s best

A. The patient is having an allergic reaction to the drug.
B. The patient needs a higher dose of this drug
C. This is normal side-effect of AtSO4
D. The patient is anxious about upcoming surgery

4. Ana’s postoperative vital signs are a blood pressure of 80/50 mm Hg, a pulse of 140, and respirations of 32. Suspecting shock, which of the following orders would the nurse question?

A.Put the client in modified Trendelenberg’s position.
B. Administer oxygen at 100%.
C. Monitor urine output every hour.
D. Administer Demerol 50mg IM q4h

5. Mr. Pablo, diagnosed with Bladder Cancer, is scheduled for a cystectomy with the creation of an ileal conduit in the morning. He is wringing his hands and pacing the floor when the nurse enters his room. What is the best approach?

A. "Good evening, Mr. Pablo. Wasn’t it a pleasant day, today?"
B. "Mr, Pablo, you must be so worried, I’ll leave you alone with your thoughts.
C. “Mr. Pablo, you’ll wear out the hospital floors and yourself at this rate."
D. "Mr. Pablo, you appear anxious to me. How are you feeling about tomorrow’s surgery?"

6. After surgery, Gina returns from the Post-anesthesia Care Unit (Recovery Room) with a nasogastric tube in place following a gall bladder surgery. She continues to complain of nausea. Which action would the nurse take?

A. Call the physician immediately.
B. Administer the prescribed antiemetic.
C. Check the patency of the nasogastric tube for any obstruction.
D. Change the patient’s position.

7. Mr. Perez is in continuous pain from cancer that has metastasized to the bone. Pain medication provides little relief and he refuses to move. The nurse should plan to:

A. Reassure him that the nurses will not hurt him
B. Let him perform his own activities of daily living
C. Handle him gently when assisting with required care
D. Complete A.M. care quickly as possible when necessary

8. A client returns from the recovery room at 9AM alert and oriented, with an IV infusing. His pulse is 82, blood pressure is 120/80, respirations are 20, and all are within normal range. At 10 am and at 11 am, his vital signs are stable. At noon, however, his pulse rate is 94, blood pressure is 116/74, and respirations are 24. What nursing action is most appropriate?

A. Notify his physician.
B. Take his vital signs again in 15 minutes.
C. Take his vital signs again in an hour.
D. Place the patient in shock position.

9. A 56 year old construction worker is brought to the hospital unconscious after falling from a 2-story building. When assessing the client, the nurse would be most concerned if the assessment revealed:

A. Reactive pupils
B. A depressed fontanel
C. Bleeding from ears
D. An elevated temperature

10. Which of the ff. statements by the client to the nurse indicates a risk factor for CAD?

A. “I exercise every other day.”
B. “My father died of Myasthenia Gravis.”
C. “My cholesterol is 180.”
D. “I smoke 1 1/2 packs of cigarettes per day.”

11. Mr. Braga was ordered Digoxin 0.25 mg. OD. Which is poor knowledge regarding this drug?

A. It has positive inotropic and negative chronotropic effects
B. The positive inotropic effect will decrease urine output
C. Toxixity can occur more easily in the presence of hypokalemia, liver and renal problems
D. Do not give the drug if the apical rate is less than 60 beats per minute.

12. Valsalva maneuver can result in bradycardia. Which of the following activities will not stimulate Valsalva’s maneuver?

A. Use of stool softeners.
B. Enema administration
C. Gagging while toothbrushing.
D. Lifting heavy objects

13. The nurse is teaching the patient regarding his permanent artificial pacemaker. Which information given by the nurse shows her knowledge deficit about the artificial cardiac pacemaker?

A. take the pulse rate once a day, in the morning upon awakening
B. may be allowed to use electrical appliances
C. have regular follow up care
D. may engage in contact sports

14. A patient with angina pectoris is being discharged home with nitroglycerine tablets. Which of the following instructions does the nurse include in the teaching?

A. “When your chest pain begins, lie down, and place one tablet under your tongue. If the pain continues, take another tablet in 5 minutes.”
B. “Place one tablet under your tongue. If the pain is not relieved in 15 minutes, go to the hospital.”
C. “Continue your activity, and if the pain does not go away in 10 minutes, begin taking the nitro tablets one every 5 minutes for 15 minutes, then go lie down.”
D. “Place one Nitroglycerine tablet under the tongue every five minutes for three doses. Go to the hospital if the pain is unrelieved.

15. A client with chronic heart failure has been placed on a diet restricted to 2000mg. of sodium per day. The client demonstrates adequate knowledge if behaviors are evident such as not salting food and avoidance of which food?

A. Whole milk
B. Canned sardines
C. Plain nuts
D. Eggs

16. A student nurse is assigned to a client who has a diagnosis of thrombophlebitis. Which action by this team member is most appropriate?

A. Apply a heating pad to the involved site.
B. Elevate the client’s legs 90 degrees.
C. Instruct the client about the need for bed rest.
D. Provide active range-of-motion exercises to both legs at least twice every shift.

17. A client receiving heparin sodium asks the nurse how the drug works. Which of the following points would the nurse include in the explanation to the client?

A. It dissolves existing thrombi.
B. It prevents conversion of factors that are needed in the formation of clots.
C. It inactivates thrombin that forms and dissolves existing thrombi.
D. It interferes with vitamin K absorption.

18. The nurse is conducting an education session for a group of smokers in a “stop smoking” class. Which finding would the nurse state as a common symptom of lung cancer? :

A. Dyspnea on exertion
B. Foamy, blood-tinged sputum
C. Wheezing sound on inspiration
D. Cough or change in a chronic cough

19. Which is the most relevant knowledge about oxygen administration to a client with COPD?

A. Oxygen at 1-2L/min is given to maintain the hypoxic stimulus for breathing.
B. Hypoxia stimulates the central chemoreceptors in the medulla that makes the client breath.
C. Oxygen is administered best using a non-rebreathing mask
D. Blood gases are monitored using a pulse oximeter.

20. When suctioning mucus from a client’s lungs, which nursing action would be least appropriate?

A. Lubricate the catheter tip with sterile saline before insertion.
B. Use sterile technique with a two-gloved approach
C. Suction until the client indicates to stop or no longer than 20 second
D. Hyperoxygenate the client before and after suctioning

21. Dr. Santos prescribes oral rifampin (Rimactane) and isoniazid (INH) for a client with a positive Tuberculin skin test. When informing the client of this decision, the nurse knows that the purpose of this choice of treatment is to

A. Cause less irritation to the gastrointestinal tract
B. Destroy resistant organisms and promote proper blood levels of the drugs
C. Gain a more rapid systemic effect
D. Delay resistance and increase the tuberculostatic effect

22. Mario undergoes a left thoracotomy and a partial pneumonectomy. Chest tubes are inserted, and one-bottle water-seal drainage is instituted in the operating room. In the postanesthesia care unit Mario is placed in Fowler’s position on either his right
side or on his back to

A. Reduce incisional pain.
B. Facilitate ventilation of the left lung.
C. Equalize pressure in the pleural space.
D. Increase venous return

23. A client with COPD is being prepared for discharge. The following are relevant instructions to the client regarding the use of an oral inhaler EXCEPT

A. Breath in and out as fully as possible before placing the mouthpiece inside the mouth.
B. Inhale slowly through the mouth as the canister is pressed down
C. Hold his breath for about 10 seconds before exhaling
D. Slowly breath out through the mouth with pursed lips after inhaling the drug.

24. A client is scheduled for a bronchoscopy. When teaching the client what to expect afterward, the nurse’s highest priority of information would be

A. Food and fluids will be withheld for at least 2 hours.
B. Warm saline gargles will be done q 2h.
C. Coughing and deep-breathing exercises will be done q2h.
D. Only ice chips and cold liquids will be allowed initially.

25. The nurse enters the room of a client with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The client’s nasal cannula oxygen is running at a rate of 6 L per minute, the skin color is pink, and the respirations are 9 per minute and shallow. What is the nurse’s best initial action?

A. Take heart rate and blood pressure.
B. Call the physician.
C. Lower the oxygen rate.
D. Position the client in a Fowler’s position.

26. The nurse is preparing her plan of care for her patient diagnosed with pneumonia. Which is the most appropriate nursing diagnosis for this patient?

A. Fluid volume deficit
B. Decreased tissue perfusion.
C. Impaired gas exchange.
D. Risk for infection

27. A nurse at the weight loss clinic assesses a client who has a large abdomen and a rounded face. Which additional assessment finding would lead the nurse to suspect that the client has Cushing’s syndrome rather than obesity?

A. large thighs and upper arms
B. pendulous abdomen and large hips
C. abdominal striae and ankle enlargement
D. posterior neck fat pad and thin extremities

28. Which statement by the client indicates understanding of the possible side effects of Prednisone therapy?

A. “I should limit my potassium intake because hyperkalemia is a side-effect of this drug.”
B. “I must take this medicine exactly as my doctor ordered it. I shouldn’t skip doses.”
C. “This medicine will protect me from getting any colds or infection.”
D. “My incision will heal much faster because of this drug.”

29. A client, who is suspected of having Pheochromocytoma, complains of sweating, palpitation and headache. Which assessment is essential for the nurse to make first?

A. Pupil reaction
B. Hand grips
C. Blood pressure
D. Blood glucose

30. The nurse is attending a bridal shower for a friend when another guest, who happens to be a diabetic, starts to tremble and complains of dizziness. The next best action for the nurse to take is to:

A. Encourage the guest to eat some baked macaroni
B. Call the guest’s personal physician
C. Offer the guest a cup of coffee
D. Give the guest a glass of orange juice

31. An adult, who is newly diagnosed with Graves disease, asks the nurse, “Why do I need to take Propanolol (Inderal)?” Based on the nurse’s understanding of the medication and Grave’s disease, the best response would be:

A. “The medication will limit thyroid hormone secretion.”
B. “The medication limit synthesis of the thyroid hormones.”
C. “The medication will block the cardiovascular symptoms of Grave’s disease.”
D. “The medication will increase the synthesis of thyroid hormones.”

32. During the first 24 hours after thyroid surgery, the nurse should include in her care:

A. Checking the back and sides of the operative dressing
B. Supporting the head during mild range of motion exercise
C. Encouraging the client to ventilate her feelings about the surgery
D. Advising the client that she can resume her normal activities immediately

33. On discharge, the nurse teaches the patient to observe for signs of surgically induced hypothyroidism. The nurse would know that the patient understands the teaching when she states she should notify the MD if she develops:

A. Intolerance to heat
B. Dry skin and fatigue
C. Progressive weight gain
D. Insomnia and excitability

34. What is the best reason for the nurse in instructing the client to rotate injection sites for insulin?

A. Lipodystrophy can result and is extremely painful
B. Poor rotation technique can cause superficial hemorrhaging
C. Lipodystrophic areas can result, causing erratic insulin absorption rates from these
D. Injection sites can never be reused

35. Which of the following would be inappropriate to include in a diabetic teaching plan?

A. Change position hourly to increase circulation
B. Inspect feet and legs daily for any changes
C. Keep legs elevated on 2 pillows while sleeping
D. Keep the insulin not in use in the refrigerator

36. Included in the plan of care for the immediate post-gastroscopy period will be:

A. Maintain NGT to intermittent suction
B. Assess gag reflex prior to administration of fluids
C. Assess for pain and medicate as ordered
D. Measure abdominal girth every 4 hours

37. Which description of pain would be most characteristic of a duodenal ulcer?

A. Gnawing, dull, aching, hungerlike pain in the epigastric area that is relieved by food intake
B. RUQ pain that increases after meal
C. Sharp pain in the epigastric area that radiates to the right shoulder
D. A sensation of painful pressure in the midsternal area

38. The client underwent Billroth surgery for gastric ulcer. Post-operatively, the drainage from his NGT is thick and the volume of secretions has dramatically reduced in the last 2 hours and the client feels like vomiting. The most appropriate nursing action is to:

A. Reposition the NGT by advancing it gently NSS
B. Notify the MD of your findings
C. Irrigate the NGT with 50 cc of sterile
D. Discontinue the low-intermittent suction

39. After Billroth II Surgery, the client developed dumping syndrome. Which of the following should the nurse exclude in the plan of care?

A. Sit upright for at least 30 minutes after meals
B. Take only sips of H2O between bites of solid food
C. Eat small meals every 2-3 hours
D. Reduce the amount of simple carbohydrate in the diet

40. The laboratory of a male patient with Peptic ulcer revealed an elevated titer of Helicobacter pylori. Which of the following statements indicate an understanding of this data?

A. Treatment will include Ranitidine and Antibiotics
B. No treatment is necessary at this time
C. This result indicates gastric cancer caused by the organism
D. Surgical treatment is necessary

41. What instructions should the client be given before undergoing a paracentesis?

A. NPO 12 hours before procedure
B. Empty bladder before procedure
C. Strict bed rest following procedure
D. Empty bowel before procedure

42. The husband of a client asks the nurse about the protein-restricted diet ordered because of advanced liver disease. What statement by the nurse would best explain the purpose of the diet?

A. “The liver cannot rid the body of ammonia that is made by the breakdown of protein in the digestive system.”
B. “The liver heals better with a high carbohydrates diet rather than protein.”
C. “Most people have too much protein in their diets. The amount of this diet is better for liver healing.”
D. “Because of portal hyperemesis, the blood flows around the liver and ammonia made from protein collects in the brain causing hallucinations.”

43. Which of the drug of choice for pain controls the patient with acute pancreatitis?

A. Morphine
C. Meperidine
D. Codeine

44. Immediately after cholecystectomy, the nursing action that should assume the highest priority is:

A. encouraging the client to take adequate deep breaths by mouth
B. encouraging the client to cough and deep breathe
C. changing the dressing at least BID
D. irrigate the T-tube frequently

45. A Sengstaken-Blakemore tube is inserted in the effort to stop the bleeding esophageal varices in a patient with complicated liver cirrhosis. Upon insertion of the tube, the client complains of difficulty of breathing. The first action of the nurse is to:

A. Deflate the esophageal balloon
B. Monitor VS
C. Encourage him to take deep breaths
D. Notify the MD

46. The client presents with severe rectal bleeding, 16 diarrheal stools a day, severe abdominal pain, tenesmus and dehydration. Because of these symptoms the nurse should be alert for other problems associated with what disease?

A. Chrons disease
B. Ulcerative colitis
C. Diverticulitis
D. Peritonitis

47. A client is being evaluated for cancer of the colon. In preparing the client for barium enema, the nurse should:

A. Give laxative the night before and a cleansing enema in the morning before the test
B. Render an oil retention enema and give laxative the night before
C. Instruct the client to swallow 6 radiopaque tablets the evening before the study
D. Place the client on CBR a day before the study

48. The client has a good understanding of the means to reduce the chances of colon cancer when he states:

A. “I will exercise daily.”
B. “I will include more red meat in my diet.”
C. “I will have an annual chest x-ray.”
D. “I will include more fresh fruits and vegetables in my diet.”

49. Days after abdominal surgery, the client’s wound dehisces. The safest nursing intervention when this occurs is to

A. Cover the wound with sterile, moist saline dressing
B. Approximate the wound edges with tapes
C. Irrigate the wound with sterile saline
D. Hold the abdominal contents in place with a sterile gloved hand

50. An intravenous pyelogram reveals that Paulo, age 35, has a renal calculus. He is believed to have a small stone that will pass spontaneously. To increase the chance of the stone passing, the nurse would instruct the client to force fluids and to

A. Strain all urine.
B. Ambulate.
C. Remain on bed rest.
D. Ask for medications to relax him.

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Latest Comments
  1. lekha s r

    i coudn”t get the proper answers and rationals

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