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Can someone experience only occasional sundowners ?

I work as a psych RN & we admitted a 77 male with no previous psych history. His history did reveal a 51-year marriage with him being physically aggressive towards his wife. He was on a medical floor first, needed a CPR for choking on a pancake, and received a pacemaker before coming to my floor. Those 4 days on medical were reported to be fine, pleasant and cooperative. He comes to us on psych with the depression and remorse over the incident with the wife, and that first night with us, is nothing pleasant or cooperative. He exhibited every sign and symptom of what I would have said was sundowning: increased agitation, wanting to wander, thinking we were all at a bonfire, picking wood up from mid-air, trying to climb out of bed, unsteady gait, strength and aggression, no cognitive abilities whatsoever. I documented all of this and we had him on 1:1 OBS. Last night I worked and he was "back to normal" with none of that behavior, no recollection of it - but he said my description fits some of the things his son was telling him he was doing on the phone..... So my question is, can sundowning happen intermittently - maybe one night out the week or 2 or 3 but other nights be as normal as can be?
Status: Open    Aug 15, 2016 - 12:03 PM


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Aug 24, 2016 - 09:30 AM

Yes, it doesn't have to happen every night. I feel the following are things that could have made him more susceptible to the sundowning during his hospital stay:

1. Pain
2. Severe Constipation
3. Poor Nourishment (not eating the hospital food).
4. Being on too many medications
5. Infection
6. Having been in a noisy and disruptive sleeping environment while on the medical floor


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By mebunny_97 on Aug 27, 2016 - 04:32 AM | Like (0)  |  Report

What is "sundowning"?

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