Let's see where you are at in your CCRN test preparation.
One of the best ways to test your knowledge throughout the study process is to take practice CCRN test questions. Practice questions often serve as checkpoints to help you identify what you have nailed down and what you still need to review. Additionally, practice questions expose you to the different types of questions you may see on your exam. Whether you take a CCRN review course or venture on your own in your CCRN prep, make sure you take plenty of questions to ready yourself for test day.
Ready to see how well you have prepared? Here are 6 questions from our Critical Care Academy test bank with content frequently seen on the CCRN exam. (Answers and explanations below)
1. A patient is admitted for ethylene glycol ingestion. The nurse knows to monitor for which of the following:
c) Metabolic alkalosis
d) Prolonged QT
2. A positive Trousseau’s sign indicates:
3. Which phase of the cardiac cycle does the intra-aortic balloon pump inflate?
a) End of ventricular diastole
b) Beginning of ventricular systole
c) Beginning of ventricular diastole
d) Beginning of ventricular depolarization
4. A patient presents with tachypnea and labored breathing and is admitted for acute respiratory failure. The Chest X-ray reveals bilateral pulmonary congestion. The nurse auscultates a loud systolic murmur at the apical area. After a PA catheter is inserted, large prominent V waves are present during the PAOP reading. Which of the following should the nurse suspect:
a) Aortic stenosis
b) Aortic insufficiency
c) Mitral stenosis
d) Mitral insufficiency
5. A patient with severe SIADH should be treated with:
a) Normal saline
b) Hypertonic saline
d) D5 ½ NS + 20mEq/KCL
6. A patient presents with anxiety and tachypnea. The nurse auscultates an increased intensity of Pulmonary S2. Which of the following should the nurse assess for:
a) Pulmonary embolism
b) Atrial septal defect
c) Ventricular septal defect
d) Papillary muscle rupture
1. Prolonged QT – Ethylene Glycol is commonly found in antifreeze and has an affinity for calcium. Thus, ethylene glycol ingestion may lead to hypocalcemia, which can cause prolonged QT and dysrhythmias. It also causes metabolic acidosis. Seizures and hypophosphatemia would not be present in this type of patient.
2. Hypocalcemia – Remember, a positive Trousseau’s sign is where an inflated blood pressure cuff on the wrist causes flexion and spasm in the wrist, thumb, metacarpal, and interphalangeal joints. When a patient has hypocalcemia, the hand adopts a fixed position when a blood pressure cuff is placed on the arm for at least 3 minutes.
3. Beginning of ventricular diastole – The balloon pump deflates when your heart contracts (ventricular systole) which helps to reduce afterload, and improve cardiac output. Therefore, the balloon pump must inflate when the heart relaxes (ventricular diastole) to increase (augment) diastolic pressure and improve coronary blood flow.
4. Mitral insufficiency – To answer this question, you need to recall the 4 zones (A, P, T, M) of valve auscultation. The mitral valve is best auscultated at the apical area (apex of the heart). Large prominent or “cannon” V waves in the PAOP waveform suggest elevated pressures in the left atrium during ventricular contraction. You would see these changes if there is backflow or “regurgitation” of blood due to mitral regurgitation.
5. Hypertonic saline – Remember that hypertonic saline contains more (“hyper”) salt or sodium than normal saline. SIADH (too much water = dilutional hyponatremia) is treated with fluid restriction. Patients with severe SIADH require hypertonic fluids to correct this electrolyte imbalance.
6. Pulmonary embolism – A loud S2 means the pressure in the PA is higher, suggesting some sort of obstruction or constriction in the pulmonary vessels. A pulmonary embolism would most likely result in a loud S2. Additionally, tricuspid regurgitation and Rt heart failure would also be present on an echocardiogram
After answering these questions, think about how you performed. Do you feel like you could easily arrive at the answers because you felt confident in the material? Or, were you at least able to cross off a few incorrect answers because you knew that those certainly were not accurate? Overall, how did you feel answering these questions: confident, a little uncertain, or was it a guessing game?
How you prepare for the CCRN is vital to your performance. No matter if you have years of critical care nursing experience or have just met your required hours to sit for the test, you must prepare thoroughly to take the exam. Knowing the content is the first step to passing the test, but you also have to understand how to read and answer the questions.
This understanding comes with practice and exposure to the material. So, taking these 6 questions is a great start, but you need to do more. There are 150 questions on the CCRN exam, so you will want to do at least 150 practice questions, at a minimum.
There are several ways you can access free CCRN practice questions. You can scour the internet for every free question available, with the understanding the answers and justifications may not be accurate.
Alternatively, you can use a CCRN exam prep book, which helps you review the material and provides practice questions throughout the book. However, one of the best ways to prepare for the CCRN exam is to take a review course.
A CCRN review course helps nurses know exactly what they need to know to succeed on the exam. Review courses not only go over the material and give you the opportunity to ask questions, but they also provide you with access to more test questions than you will find on the internet or in a review book. Review courses can be offered in-person or online. However, most nurses now opt for online review courses because they can be self-paced and are easier to fit into their busy schedule.
Begin Your CCRN Certification Journey with Critical Care Academy
At Critical Care Academy, we know your time is precious. That is why our materials are geared toward nurses on-the-go. With our mobile-friendly video modules, we help you prepare for your CCRN exam on those 5-minute lunch breaks, your commute to work, or those rare moments of downtime. Our course offers CCRN Test questions for practice, quizzes, and a full practice exam to ensure you get as much exposure as possible to questions very similar to what you will see on the exam.
Ready to pass the exam on the first try, advance your nursing career, and improve your patient outcomes?
Join Critical Care Academy today!