Sympathetic vs. parasympathetic nervous system quiz for nursing students. This quiz will test your knowledge on the autonomic nervous system along with the medications (pharmacology) that either inhibit or stimulate these nervous systems.
In the previous NCLEX review series, I explained about other neurological disorders, so be sure to check those reviews out.
As the nurse, it is important to know how the nervous system works and the types of drugs that can be administered to either inhibit or stimulate the sympathetic or parasympathetic nervous system.
Don’t forget to watch the lecture on the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system before taking the quiz.
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Parasympathetic vs. Sympathetic Nervous System (Autonomic) Quiz
1. True or False: The autonomic nervous system is unique because it has only one neuron that synapses in an autonomic ganglion. Hence it has only pregangolic neurons not postganglionic neurons.
Answer is FALSE. The autonomic nervous system has TWO neurons that synapse in an autonomic ganglion. Therefore, there is a pregangolic and postgangolic neuron.
2. The sympathetic nervous system postganglionic neuron releases what neurotransmitter?
C. Both Acetylcholine and Norepinephrine
The answer is B.
3. The sympathetic nervous system preganglionic neuron releases what neurotransmitter?
The answer is B.
4. In the sympathetic nervous system ganglia are found? Select all that apply:
B. Brain stem
The answers are A and D.
5. In the parasympathetic nervous system the ganglia are found? Select all that apply:
B. Brain stem
The answers are B and D.
6. The postganglionic neuron releases what neurotransmitter in the parasympathetic nervous system?
The answer is D.
7. Select all the signs and symptoms a patient can experience with the stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system: Select all that apply:
D. Dilated pupils
E. Urinary incontinence
G. Cold and clammy
H. Excessive salivation
The answers are A, C, D, F, and I.
8. Select all the signs and symptoms a patient can experience when the stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system: Select all that apply:
B. Dilated pupils
D. Constrict pupils
E. Bladder contraction
F. Dry mouth
G. Slow digestion
The answers are A, C, D, and E.
9. The _________ nervous system stimulates cranial nerve ______, which is responsible for slowing the heart rate, constricting the airway, and stimulating digestion.
A. parasympathetic, X
B. sympathetic, V
C. parasympathetic, III
D. sympathetic, VII
The answer is A…the vagus nerve.
10. A patient is started on a norepinephrine drip. What side effects can this medication cause? Select all that apply:
The answers are A and C. This medication (also called Levophed) mimics the sympathetic nervous system (hence it is an adrenergic agonist also called sympathomimetic). It will increase the heart rate and blood pressure.
11. A patient with myasthenia gravis is started on Pyridostigmine. What assessment finding demonstrates the drug is working correctly?
A. The patient experiences dilation of the pupils.
B. The patient experiences a relaxed bladder.
C. The patient experiences bronchodilation.
D. The patient experiences normal muscle function in the face and eyes.
The answer is D. Pyridostigmine is a cholingeric drug used to treat myasthenia gravis. Remember patients with this condition have trouble with control of muscles in the face/eyes etc. This drug will increase the availability of acetylcholine to help those receptors contract those smooth muscles and maintain normal muscle function in the face and eyes.
12. Select the drugs below that are considered anticholinergic drugs (also called parasympatholytic):
The answers are B and C. These are anticholinergic drugs.
13. What are some side effects of adrenergic antagonist drugs (sympatholytic): select all that apply
The answers are: B and C
14. Select the drugs below that are considered sympathomimetic drugs:
The answers are A, B, and C. All these drugs can mimic the sympathetic nervous system.
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