Welcome to your ultimate diabetes NCLEX questions and reviewer! Answer all the diabetes mellitus practice questions (100 items) from our nursing test bank and test your competence in the nursing management of diabetes.
Diabetes Mellitus Nursing Test Bank
In this section is the practice NCLEX quiz for diabetes mellitus. This 100-item quiz will test your knowledge and ability to differentiate the different types of diabetes mellitus, recognizing the clinical manifestations and signs and symptoms of complications, medical management, nursing management, and patient education.
Quizzes included in this guide are:
- Diabetes Mellitus NCLEX Questions Quiz #1 (25 Items)
- Diabetes Mellitus NCLEX Questions Quiz #2 (25 Items)
- Diabetes Mellitus NCLEX Questions Quiz #3 (25 Items)
- Diabetes Mellitus NCLEX Questions Quiz #4 (25 Items)
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Diabetes Mellitus NCLEX Questions (Part 1: 25 Items)
Here is the first part of your NCLEX practice questions for diabetes mellitus. Includes items. Please make sure to answer all other quizzes!
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Question 1 of 70
Knowing that gluconeogenesis helps to maintain blood glucose levels, a nurse should:CorrectIncorrect
Question 2 of 70
The nurse is admitting a patient diagnosed with type 2 diabetes mellitus. The nurse should expect the following symptoms during an assessment, except:CorrectIncorrect
Question 3 of 70
Glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1C) test measures the average blood glucose control of an individual over the previous three months. Which of the following values is considered a diagnosis of pre-diabetes?CorrectIncorrect
Question 4 of 70
Rotation sites for insulin injection should be separated from one another by 2.5 cm (1 inch) and should be used only every:CorrectIncorrect
Question 5 of 70
A clinical feature that distinguishes a hypoglycemic reaction from a ketoacidosis reaction is:CorrectIncorrect
Question 6 of 70
Clinical nursing assessment for a patient with microangiopathy who has manifested impaired peripheral arterial circulation includes all of the following, except:CorrectIncorrect
Question 7 of 70
The nurse expects that a type 1 diabetic may receive how much of his or her morning dose of insulin preoperatively?CorrectIncorrect
Question 8 of 70
Albert, a 35-year-old insulin-dependent diabetic, is admitted to the hospital with a diagnosis of pneumonia. He has been febrile since admission. His daily insulin requirement is 24 units of NPH. Every morning Albert is given NPH insulin at 0730. Meals are served at 0830, 1230, and 1830. The nurse expects that the NPH insulin will reach its maximum effect (peak) between the hours of:CorrectIncorrect
Question 9 of 70
A male nurse is providing a bedtime snack for his patient. This is based on the knowledge that intermediate-acting insulins are effective for an approximate duration of:CorrectIncorrect
Question 10 of 70
A nurse went to a patient’s room to do routine vital signs monitoring and found out that the patient’s bedtime snack was not eaten. This should alert the nurse to check and assess for:CorrectIncorrect
Question 11 of 70
A client is taking NPH insulin daily every morning. The nurse instructs the client that the most likely time for a hypoglycemic reaction to occur is:CorrectIncorrect
Question 12 of 70
An external insulin pump is prescribed for a client with DM. The client asks the nurse about the functioning of the pump. The nurse bases the response on the information that the pump:CorrectIncorrect
Question 13 of 70
A client with a diagnosis of diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is being treated in the ER. Which finding would a nurse expect to note as confirming this diagnosis?CorrectIncorrect
Question 14 of 70
A client with DM demonstrates acute anxiety when first admitted for the treatment of hyperglycemia. The most appropriate intervention to decrease the client’s anxiety would be to:CorrectIncorrect
Question 15 of 70
A nurse is preparing a plan of care for a client with diabetes mellitus who has hyperglycemia. The priority nursing diagnosis would be:CorrectIncorrect
Question 16 of 70
A nurse is caring for a client admitted to the ER with DKA. In the acute phase the priority nursing action is to prepare to:CorrectIncorrect
Question 17 of 70
A nurse performs a physical assessment on a client with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Findings include fasting blood glucose of 120mg/dl, temperature of 101ºF, pulse of 88 bpm, respirations of 22 bpm, and a BP of 140/84 mmHg. Which finding would be of most concern to the nurse?CorrectIncorrect
Question 18 of 70
A client with type 1 diabetes mellitus calls the nurse to report recurrent episodes of hypoglycemia with exercise. Which statement by the client indicated an inadequate understanding of the peak action of NPH insulin and exercise?CorrectIncorrect
Question 19 of 70
A client with diabetes mellitus visits a health care clinic. The client’s diabetes previously had been well controlled with glyburide (Diabeta), 5 mg PO daily, but recently, the fasting blood glucose has been running 180-200 mg/dl. Which medication, if added to the clients regimen, may have contributed to the hyperglycemia?CorrectIncorrect
Question 20 of 70
Glucose is an important molecule in a cell because this molecule is primarily used for:CorrectIncorrect
Question 21 of 70
When a client is first admitted with hyperglycemic hyperosmolar nonketotic syndrome (HHNS), the nurse’s priority is to provide:CorrectIncorrect
Question 22 of 70
The nurse is admitting a client with hypoglycemia. Identify the signs and symptoms the nurse should expect. Select all that apply.CorrectIncorrect
Question 23 of 70
When a client is experiencing diabetic ketoacidosis, the insulin that would be administered is:CorrectIncorrect
Question 24 of 70
The nurse recognizes that additional teaching is necessary when the client who is learning alternative site testing (AST) for glucose monitoring says:CorrectIncorrect
Question 25 of 70
A 44-year-old woman with type 1 diabetes comes to the emergency department due to abdominal pain accompanied by nausea and vomiting. The patient had a history of chronic back pain due to a motor accident 20 years ago. Her situation renders her unable to work and pay for the increasing price of insulin, which has doubled during the last five years. The patient doesn’t have medical coverage or insurance; therefore, she rations her insulin intake, making her unable to follow her prescribed therapeutic regimen for her diabetes. Because of her situation, the client is at high risk of developing diabetic ketoacidosis. As her nurse, which of the following symptoms would you anticipate the client to exhibit? Select all that apply.CorrectIncorrect
Question 26 of 70
A client’s blood gases reflect diabetic acidosis. The nurse should expect:CorrectIncorrect
Question 27 of 70
The nurse knows that glucagon may be given in the treatment of hypoglycemia because it:CorrectIncorrect
Question 28 of 70
A client with type 1 diabetes mellitus has a fingerstick glucose level of 258mg/dl at bedtime. An order for sliding scale insulin exists. The nurse should:CorrectIncorrect
Question 29 of 70
The physician orders 36 units of NPH and 12 units of regular insulin. The nurse plans to administer these drugs using one (1) syringe.
Tip: Identify the steps in this procedure by listing them in priority order, simply drag and drop the choices below.
Invert NPH vial and withdraw NPH dose
Inject air equal to regular dose into regular dose
Invert regular insulin bottle and withdraw regular insulin dose
Inject air equal to NPH dose into NPH vial
Question 30 of 70
The nurse is teaching a client regarding the administration of insulin as part of the discharge plan. Which of the following insulin has the most rapid onset of action?CorrectIncorrect
Question 31 of 70
A client with diabetes mellitus states, “I cannot eat big meals; I prefer to snack throughout the day.” The nurse should carefully explain that:CorrectIncorrect
Question 32 of 70
A client with diabetes mellitus has an above-knee amputation because of severe peripheral vascular disease, Two days following surgery, when preparing the client for dinner, it is the nurse’s primary responsibility to:CorrectIncorrect
Question 33 of 70
Which of the following nursing interventions should be taken for a client who complains of nausea and vomits one hour after taking his glyburide (DiaBeta)?CorrectIncorrect
Question 34 of 70
Which of the following chronic complications is associated with diabetes?CorrectIncorrect
Question 35 of 70
Rotating injection sites when administering insulin prevents which of the following complications?CorrectIncorrect
Question 36 of 70
Which of the following methods of insulin administration would be used in the initial treatment of hyperglycemia in a client with diabetic ketoacidosis?CorrectIncorrect
Question 37 of 70
Insulin forces which of the following electrolytes out of the plasma and into the cells?CorrectIncorrect
Question 38 of 70
Which of the following causes of Hyperglycaemic Hyperosmolar Non-Ketotic Syndrome (HHNS) is most common?CorrectIncorrect
Question 39 of 70
A client is in diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) secondary to infection. As the condition progresses, which of the following symptoms might the nurse see?CorrectIncorrect
Question 40 of 70
Clients with type 1 diabetes may require which of the following changes to their daily routine during periods of infection?CorrectIncorrect
Question 41 of 70
During the lecture, the clinical instructor tells the students that 50% to 60% of daily calories should come from carbohydrates. What should the nurse say about the types of carbohydrates that can be eaten?CorrectIncorrect
Question 42 of 70
At the time Cherrie Ann found out that the symptoms of diabetes were caused by high levels of blood glucose, she decided to break the habit of eating carbohydrates. With this, the nurse would be aware that the client might develop which of the following complications?CorrectIncorrect
Question 43 of 70
Joko has recently been diagnosed with type 1 Diabetes Mellitus and asks nurse Jessica for help formulating a nutrition plan. Which of the following recommendations would the nurse make to help the client increase calorie consumption to offset absorption problems?CorrectIncorrect
Question 44 of 70
Billy is being asked concerning his health in the emergency department. When obtaining a health history from a patient with acute pancreatitis, the nurse asks the patient specifically about the history of:CorrectIncorrect
Question 45 of 70
Nurse Shey is educating a pregnant client who has gestational diabetes. Which of the following statements should the nurse make to the client? Select all that apply.CorrectIncorrect
Question 46 of 70
The goal of preprandial blood glucose for those with type 1 diabetes mellitus is:CorrectIncorrect
Question 47 of 70
The guidelines for carbohydrate counting as medical nutrition therapy for diabetes mellitus includes all of the following, except:CorrectIncorrect
Question 48 of 70
The nurse working in the physician’s office is reviewing lab results on the clients seen that day. One of the clients who has classic diabetic symptoms had an eight-hour fasting plasma glucose (FPG) test done. The nurse realizes that diagnostic criteria developed by the American Diabetes Association for diabetes include classic diabetic symptoms plus which of the following fasting plasma glucose levels?CorrectIncorrect
Question 49 of 70
When taking a health history, the nurse screens for manifestations suggestive of diabetes type 1. Which of the following manifestations are considered the primary manifestations of type 1 diabetes mellitus and would be most suggestive and require follow-up investigation?CorrectIncorrect
Question 50 of 70
The nurse is working with an overweight client who has a high-stress job and smokes. This client has just received a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes mellitus and has just been started on an oral hypoglycemic agent. Which of the following goals for the client which if met, would be most likely to lead to an improvement in insulin efficiency to the point the client would no longer require oral hypoglycemic agents?CorrectIncorrect
Question 51 of 70
During a visit to a community, the nurse will recommend routine screening for diabetes when the person has one or more of seven risk criteria. Which of the following persons that the nurse comes in contact with most needs to be screened for diabetes based on the seven risk criteria?CorrectIncorrect
Question 52 of 70
A client was brought to the emergency room with complaints of slurring of speech, vomiting, dry mucosa, and dry skin turgor. Lab tests showing serum sodium 125 mEq/L and serum blood glucose of 350 mg/dL. Nurse Sophie will anticipate the physician to initially order which of the following intravenous solutions?CorrectIncorrect
Question 53 of 70
You are doing some teaching with a client who is starting on a sulfonylurea antidiabetic agent. The client mentions that he usually has a couple of beers each night and takes an aspirin each day to prevent heart attacks and/or strokes. Which of the following responses would be best on the part of the nurse?CorrectIncorrect
Question 54 of 70
Which of the following, if stated by the nurse, is correct about Hyperglycemic Hyperosmolar Nonketotic Syndrome (HHNS)?CorrectIncorrect
Question 55 of 70
Nurse Robedee is teaching an underweight and emaciated client about the proper methods/techniques when giving insulin. Which one of the following shows a proper technique?CorrectIncorrect
Question 56 of 70
Nurse Pira is explaining to the client about type 2 diabetes mellitus. Risk factors of such condition include all of the following, except:CorrectIncorrect
Question 57 of 70
Blood sugar is well controlled when Hemoglobin A1C is:CorrectIncorrect
Question 58 of 70
Which of the following diabetes drugs acts by decreasing the amount of glucose produced by the liver?CorrectIncorrect
Question 59 of 70
A 39-year-old company driver presents with shakiness, sweating, anxiety, and palpitations and tells the nurse he has type 1 diabetes mellitus. Which of the following actions should the nurse do first?CorrectIncorrect
Question 60 of 70
Which insulin can be administered through continuous intravenous infusion?CorrectIncorrect
Question 61 of 70
A medication nurse is about to give insulin to a patient with diabetes mellitus. Upon reviewing the medications of the patient, which of the following would cause a further decrease in the blood glucose level of the patient?CorrectIncorrect
Question 62 of 70
Tony is a night shift nurse who is assigned to a patient whose glucose levels remain normal at bedtime but experiences hypoglycemia at 3 am and hyperglycemia at 7 am. The patient is likely experiencing what kind of complication of insulin therapy?CorrectIncorrect
Question 63 of 70
A nurse is caring for a client admitted with diabetic retinopathy. Which of the following would the nurse expect to note on the assessment of this client:CorrectIncorrect
Question 64 of 70
A patient received 6 units of regular insulin three (3) hours ago. The nurse would be most concerned if which of the following was observed?CorrectIncorrect
Question 65 of 70
Mr. Wesley is newly diagnosed with Type I DM and is being seen by the home health nurse. The doctor’s orders include: 1200 calorie ADA diet, 15 units NPH insulin before breakfast, and check blood sugar QID. When the nurse visits the patient at 5 pm, the nurse observes the man performing blood sugar analysis. The result is 50 mg/dL. The nurse would expect the patient to be:CorrectIncorrect
Question 66 of 70
Give Regular insulin by continuous I.V. infusion at 20 units/hr. The solution is 250 ml NS with 100 units of Regular insulin. What rate on the infusion pump will deliver the correct dose? Fill in the blank.
Question 67 of 70
Your patient has had the following intake: 2 ½ cups of coffee (240 mL/cup), 11.5 oz of grape juice, ¾ qt of milk, 320 mL of diet coke, 1 ¼ L of D5W IV and 2 oz of grits. What will you record as the total intake in mL for this patient? Fill in the blank.
Question 68 of 70
A health care provider prescribed ondansetron (Zofran) 8 mg p.o. T.i.d to a patient with Type 1 diabetes mellitus with complaints of vomiting.; Available stock of Zofran in a 100 ml bottle labeled 4 mg/tsp.; How many ml will the nurse administer for each dose? Fill in the blank.
Question 69 of 70
Your patient has had the following intake: 8 oz glasses of iced tea, 4 oz cartons of grape juice, ¾ pt of ice cream, 32 oz of juice, 1 ½ L of D5W IV and 6 oz of cottage cheese. What will you record as the total intake in mL for this patient? Fill in the blank.
Question 70 of 70
A patient was recently discharged after being hospitalized due to type 1 diabetes mellitus and was given ergocalciferol (Vitamin D) 225,000 units PO daily. The patient have on hand ergocalciferol in 50,000 unit tablets. How many tablet(s) should the patient take? Fill in the blank.
Review Notes for Diabetes Mellitus
If you need a quick review around the concepts of diabetes mellitus, please see the refresher below:
- Diabetes mellitus is a disorder characterized by insufficient production of insulin in the pancreas or when there is a resistance or deficiency of available insulin resulting in hyperglycemia.
- It is characterized by disturbances in carbohydrate, protein, and fat metabolism.
- Sustained hyperglycemia has been shown to affect almost all tissues in the body and is associated with significant complications of multiple organ systems, including the eyes, nerves, kidneys, and blood vessels.
- Type 1 diabetes mellitus or, formerly called insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, typically occurs in younger people with the exact cause is unknown. Type 1 diabetes may result from an autoimmune process triggered by a virus
- Type 2 diabetes mellitus, formerly called non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus, is characterized by defects in insulin release and use, and insulin resistance. Commonly occurs in patients with obesity and those with genetic susceptibility to DM.
- Gestational diabetes mellitus is characterized by glucose intolerance of any degree that occurs during pregnancy.
- Type 1 diabetes mellitus:
- There is a destruction of the islet cells in the pancreas causing insufficient insulin and excess glucagon.
- Glucose accumulates in the serum causing hyperglycemia.
- Blood being delivered in the kidneys has high glucose concentration causing osmotic diuresis and glycosuria.
- Osmotic diuresis causes water loss, resulting in polydipsia.
- Lack of insulin makes the body unable to use carbohydrates primarily and instead uses fats and proteins for energy production, resulting in ketosis and weight loss.
- Polyphagia and fatigue result from the break down of nutritional stores.
- Type 2 diabetes mellitus:
- Insulin resistance occurs in diabetes mellitus, wherein there is a decrease in tissue sensitivity to insulin.
- In normal conditions, insulin binds to special receptors on the cell surfaces and initiates reactions involved in glucose metabolism. However, in type 2 diabetes, these intracellular reactions are diminished, making insulin less effective at stimulating glucose uptake by the tissues and at regulating glucose release by the liver.
- If the beta cells cannot keep up with the increased demand for insulin, the glucose level rises and type 2 diabetes develops.
- Gestational diabetes mellitus:
- Hyperglycemia develops in pregnancy because of the secretion of placental hormones, which causes insulin resistance.
- Gestational diabetes is related to the anti-insulin effects of progesterone, cortisol, and human placenta lactogen, which increase the amount of insulin needed to maintain glycemic control.
- Hypoglycemia is when the blood the glucose falls to less than 50 to 60 mg/dL and is linked to excessive use of hypoglycemic agents, decreased food intake, increased physical activity, excessive alcohol consumption, or renal failure. It often occurs before meals, especially if meals are delayed or snacks are omitted. It can occur on type 1 or type 2 diabetes.
- Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is caused by an absence or severe inadequacy of insulin. This deficit in available insulin results in disorders in the metabolism of carbohydrate, protein, and fat. DKA is usually associated with incorrect or failure to take insulin as prescribed and stress and is occurring in clients with type 1 diabetes.
- Hyperglycemic Hyperosmolar Nonketotic Syndrome (HHNS) is the combination of severe hyperglycemia and hyperosmolarity with little or no acidosis. The insulin level in HHNS is too low to prevent hyperglycemia but is high enough to prevent fat breakdown. HHNS occurs in older clients (50 to 70 years old) with type 2 diabetes and is associated with stress or ingestion of certain drugs.
- Microangiopathy, or diabetic microvascular disease, is characterized by capillary basement membrane thickening most prominently in the retina and glomerulus.
- Diabetic retinopathy is the deterioration of the small blood vessels that nourish the retina causing visual impairment.
- Nephropathy is a renal dysfunction caused by microvascular changes in the kidney secondary to diabetes mellitus.
- Diabetic neuropathy refers to a group of diseases that affect all types of nerves characterized by paresthesias or decreased sensation. Peripheral neuropathy and autonomic neuropathy are two of the most common types of neuropathy found in diabetes.
- Increased susceptibility to infections results from an impaired ability of granulocytes to respond to infectious agents.
- Diabetes mellitus:
- Polyuria (increased urination), polydipsia (increased thirst), and polyphagia (increased appetite) are the classic symptoms of diabetes mellitus, also known as the “3 P’s of DM”.
- Fatigue and weakness
- Weight loss
- Sudden vision changes
- Tingling or numbness in hands or feet
- Dry skin
- Skin lesions or wounds that are slow to heal
- Recurrent infections (urinary, skin, vulva)
- Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA)
- Hyperglycemic Hyperosmolar Nonketotic Syndrome (HHNS)
- Mild hypoglycemia: stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system.
- Cool, moist skin, or pallor
- Moderate hypoglycemia: decreased glucose levels for the brain cells.
- Impaired CNS function
- Inability to concentrate
- Memory lapses
- Double vision
- Severe hypoglycemia: severe impairment of the CNS.
- Disoriented behavior
- Difficulty arousing from sleep
- Loss of consciousness
- Mild hypoglycemia: stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system.
Laboratory and Diagnostics
- Diabetes mellitus
- Fasting blood glucose level above 140 mg/dL or postprandial (after meals) blood glucose levels above 200 mg/dl measured on more than one occasion is diagnostic.
- Glycosylated hemoglobin (HgbA1C) shows an elevated blood glucose level.
- Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA)
- Blood glucose levels between 300 and 8900 mg/dL
- Ketoacidosis is reflected in low serum bicarbonate (0 to 15 mEq/L) and low pH values.
- Accumulation of ketone bodies is reflected in blood and urine ketone measurements.
- Sodium and potassium concentrations may vary depending on the degree of dehydration. Increased levels of creatinine, blood urea nitrogen, and hematocrit go along with dehydration.
- Arterial blood gas indicate metabolic acidosis
- Serum blood glucose higher than 700 mg/dL
- Serum blood osmolality is higher than 350 mOsm/kg
- Urine specimen reveals the absence of ketosis
- Serum electrolyte levels show hypernatremia and hypokalemia.
- Serum blood glucose level is less than 70 mg/dL
- The main goal of treatment is to normalize insulin activity and blood glucose levels to reduce the development of complications.
- There are five components of management for diabetes: nutrition, exercise, monitoring, pharmacologic therapy, and education.
- Insulin is the primary treatment for type 1 diabetes.
- Weight reduction is the primary treatment for type 2 diabetes.
- Exercise enhances the effectiveness of insulin.
- Monitor blood glucose levels and provide teaching to the patient on how to do so.
- Administer medications, as prescribed:
- Self-administering insulin
- Provide information and teaching on how to self-administer insulin.
- On storing insulin: vials of insulin, when not in use, should be refrigerated (extreme temperatures should also be avoided). Insulin vial that is currently in use can be kept at room temperature (1 month). Cloudy insulins should be thoroughly mixed by gently inverting the vial or rolling it between the hands before drawing the solution. Intermediate-acting insulin showing a frosted, whitish coating inside the bottle, should be discarded.
- On selecting syringes: syringes should match the insulin concentration.
- On mixing insulins: patients should be warned not to inject one type of insulin into the bottle containing a different type of insulin. Patients with difficulty mixing insulins may use premixed insulin.
- Selecting and rotating injection sites: the abdomen, upper arms, thighs, and hips are the four main sites for insulin injection. Rotation of injection sites is recommended to prevent lipodystrophy which may cause a decrease in the absorption of insulin. Encourage the patient to use all available injection sites within one area rather than randomly rotating sites from area to area.
- Inserting the needle: insulin should be injected into the subcutaneous tissue, the incorrect technique may affect the rate of absorption.
- Nurse teaching on diabetes
- Assess readiness to learn and include the patient’s family in developing a diabetic teaching plan.
- Prevention of complications
- Dietary and lifestyle changes
- Proper self-care (especially foot care)
- Administration and management of insulin
- Use of hypoglycemic medications
- Management of DKA.
- Treatment goal is to prevent dehydration, electrolyte loss, and acidosis.
- Normal saline (0.9%) is infused at a high rate to replace fluid loss. Hypotonic solution (0.45% NS) may be used for hypertension or hypernatremia.
- Administer regular insulin, as ordered.
- Monitor serum glucose levels as insulin is administered.
- Monitor potassium levels, because potassium shifts affect the heart.
- Monitor respirations as respiratory distress can occur.
- Assess vital signs, intake and output, and monitor ketone levels.
- Management of HHNS.
- Assess vital signs, fluid status, and laboratory values. Fluid status and urine output are closely monitored because of the risk for renal failure secondary to severe dehydration.
- Because clients are usually older, monitor for heart failure and cardiac arrhythmias.
- Management of Hypoglycemia.
- Monitor blood glucose levels.
- Administer glucose (oral glucose, I.V. glucose, or glucagon).
- Advise client to carry simple sugar at all times to prevent case of hypoglycemia.
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