9 Parkinson’s Disease Nursing Care Plans


Parkinson’s disease, or paralysis agitans,is a progressing neurologic movement disorder that eventually leads to disability. It occurs after the age of 50 and increases in incidence with age. The disease affects more men than women and it’s the fourth most common neurodegenerative disease, with 50,000 new cases reported each year in the United States.

Parkinson’s disease is associated with decreased levels of dopamine resulting from destruction of pigmented neuronal cells in the substantia nigra in the basal ganglia region of the brain. Neuronal pathways project from the substantia nigra to the corpus striatum, where neurotransmitters are key to the control of complex body movements. The loss of dopamine stores in areas of the brain results in more excitatory neurotransmitters than inhibitory neurotransmitters, leading to an imbalance that affects voluntary movement.

Nursing Care Plans

The nursing goals for patients with Parkinson’s Disease include improving functional mobility, maintaining independence in performing ADLs, achieving optimal bowel elimination, attaining and maintaining acceptable nutritional status, achieving effective communication, and developing positive coping mechanisms.

Here are nine (9) nursing care plans (NCP) and nursing diagnosis for Parkinson’s Disease:

  1. Ineffective Airway Clearance
  2. Disturbed Thought Process
  3. Impaired Verbal Communication
  4. Impaired Physical Mobility
  5. Imbalanced Nutrition: Less Than Body Requirements
  6. Impaired Swallowing
  7. Risk for Injury
  8. Ineffective Coping
  9. Deficient Knowledge
  10. Other Nursing Care Plans

Disturbed Thought Process

Nursing Diagnosis

May be related to

  • parkinsonian medications
  • psychological causes
  • depression
  • incorrect belief system
  • chronic illness
  • misperceptions

Possibly evidenced by

  • inaccurate interpretation of the environment
  • changes in lifestyle
  • loss of significant other
  • egocentricity
  • distractibility
  • inappropriate thinking
  • memory impairment
  • sorrow
  • hypovigilance or hypervigilance
  • chronic illness
  • insomnia
  • inability to perform activities as before
  • abnormal lab studies
  • uncaring attitude
  • toxic levels of medications
  • akinesia

Desired Outcomes

  • Patient will identify factors that elicit depressive reactions and use techniques that will effectively reduce the amount and frequency of these episodes.
  • Patient will be compliant with the therapeutic regimen.
Nursing InterventionsRationale
Assess patient for depressive behaviors, causative events, and orient patient to reality as warranted.Depression is common among PD patients, whether it’s a reaction to the disorder or related to biochemical abnormality is uncertain. Identify specific problems and allow for the establishment of a plan of care. Reality orientation helps the patient to be aware of self and surroundings.
Use a nonjudgmental attitude toward the patient and actively listen to his feelings and concerns.Establishes a trusting relationship and permits the patient to discuss topics that can help the patient deal with in appropriate ways. PD patients often feel embarrassed apathetic, bored, and lonely that may be brought about by physical slowness and the great effort that even small tasks require. Encourage and assist the patient in every effort possible to carry out the tasks involved in meeting their own daily needs to remain independent.
Identify patient’s medications currently being taken.Assists with the identification of any misuse of drugs and side-effects that may precipitate depressive symptoms.
Assess the patient for a potential for suicide and suicidal ideation.Patients who are depressed and who have already thought about a suicide plan are serious and need emergency help.
Monitor vital signs every 4 hours and prn.Antidepressants and other psychoactive medications may result in cardiovascular and cerebrovascular insufficiency. Amantadine (Symmetrel) can cause psychiatric disturbances, mood changes, hallucinations.

Recommended Resources

Recommended nursing diagnosis and nursing care plan books and resources.

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See also

Other recommended site resources for this nursing care plan:

Other nursing care plans related to neurological disorders:

Matt Vera is a registered nurse with a bachelor of science in nursing since 2009 and is currently working as a full-time writer and editor for Nurseslabs. During his time as a student, he knows how frustrating it is to cram on difficult nursing topics. Finding help online is nearly impossible. His situation drove his passion for helping student nurses by creating content and lectures that are easy to digest. Knowing how valuable nurses are in delivering quality healthcare but limited in number, he wants to educate and inspire nursing students. As a nurse educator since 2010, his goal in Nurseslabs is to simplify the learning process, break down complicated topics, help motivate learners, and look for unique ways of assisting students in mastering core nursing concepts effectively.
  • This website has helped me so much with nursing interventions and now is helping me come up with interventions and understanding why because of the rationale

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