Podcast Episode 101: Ten PANCE, PANRE, and Rotation Review Questions
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Welcome to episode 101 of the Audio PANCE and PANRE Physician Assistant/Associate Board Review Podcast.

Join me today as we cover ten board review questions for your PANCE, PANRE, and rotation exams.

Special from today’s episode:

I hope you enjoy this free audio component of the examination portion of the Smarty PANCE website. The full board review website includes over 2,000 interactive board review questions, flashcards, and blueprint lessons available to all members of Smarty PANCE.

Listen to Podcast Episode 101: Ten PANCE, PANRE, and Rotation Review Questions

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Interactive exam to complement today’s podcast

1. A 75-year-female smoker with a history of atrial fibrillation and hypertension presents to the ER complaining of a 2-hour history of right-sided weakness and aphasia that has now resolved. Her physical exam and vital signs are completely unremarkable. CT head is unremarkable. Which of the following is the most likely diagnosis?

A. Subarachnoid hemorrhage
B. Transient ischemic attack
C. Cerebral venous sinus thrombosis
D. Multiple sclerosis
E. Complicated migraine

Answer and topic summary

The answer is B. Transient ischemic attack

The patient had a transient ischemic attack (TIA), which is characterized by transient neurological symptoms without objective evidence of acute infarction. Symptoms vary, but patients may have hemiparesis, hemiplegia, aphasia, or vision loss. Risk factors include alcohol, hypertension, smoking, diabetes, illicit drug use, and atrial fibrillation.

Urgent evaluation is needed in patients with symptoms of TIA (e.g., coagulation studies, TTE, EKG, CT or MRI head, imaging of the cervicocephalic vasculature via carotid US, CTA, or MRA). Treatment for high-risk patients includes dual antiplatelet therapy (ASA + clopidogrel) for 21 days and risk factor management (statin, exercise, etc). Remember the risk of an actual stroke is high after a TIA.

View blueprint lesson

Smarty PANCE Content Blueprint Review:

Covered under ⇒ PANCE Blueprint NeurologyVascular DisorderTransient ischemic attack

Also covered as part of the Internal Medicine EOR, Family Medicine EOR, and Emergency Medicine EOR topic list

2. A 26-year-old female presents with a history of miscarriages and recurrent pulmonary embolism. She is diagnosed with antiphospholipid syndrome. Which of the following is the mainstay of treatment for this condition?

A. Dual antiplatelet therapy (DAPT)
B. Aspirin and heparin
C. Dabigatran
D. Warfarin
E. Heparin

Answer and topic summary

The answer is D. Warfarin

Antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) is an autoimmune disease defined by venous thromboembolism, arterial thrombosis, and obstetric morbidity in the presence of circulating antiphospholipid antibodies (aPLs). It is the most common form of acquired thrombophilia.

aPLs include lupus anticoagulant, anticardiolipin, anti-b2-glycoprotein I antibodies. Clinical features include DVTs (32%), thrombocytopenia (22%), livedo reticularis (20%), stroke (13%), PEs (9%), and fetal loss (8%). The mainstay of treatment is warfarin. Other anticoagulants have been found to be less effective than warfarin so far.

View blueprint lesson

Smarty PANCE Content Blueprint Review:

Covered under ⇒ PANCE Blueprint HematologyCoagulation DisordersHypercoagulable states

Also covered as part of the Internal Medicine EOR and Emergency Medicine EOR topic list

3. Which of the following is the most common cause of acute bronchitis in the United States?

A. Virus
B. Bacteria
C. Fungus
D. Allergies
E. Tuberculosis

Answer and topic summary

The answer is A. Virus

Acute bronchitis is characterized by a cough due to inflammation of the large airways and trachea with no evidence of pneumonia. Acute bronchitis often follows an upper respiratory infection. The most common cause of acute bronchitis is viral. Symptoms include cough (10-20 days), headache, shortness of breath, and wheezing. The presence of fever should make you consider pneumonia or influenza.

Diagnosis is clinical. A chest radiograph should be given if it is hard to clinically distinguish between pneumonia and bronchitis. Treatment is mainly supportive care (rest, hydration) and symptomatic management (antitussives for cough, bronchodilators for wheezing, etc). Antibiotics should NOT be given for acute bronchitis.

View blueprint lesson

Smarty PANCE Content Blueprint Review:

Covered under ⇒ PANCE Blueprint PulmonaryInfectious Pulmonary DisordersAcute bronchitis

Also covered as part of the Emergency Medicine EOR topic list

4. A 27-year-old male presents to the clinic with shortness of breath, chest pain, and fatigue. His physical exam is remarkable for a crescendo-decrescendo systolic murmur heard at the apex. An echocardiogram reveals asymmetric septal hypertrophy and left ventricular hypertrophy. Which of the following is the best initial treatment option?

A. Procainamide
B. Hydrochlorothiazide
C. Beta-blockers
D. Aspirin
E. ACE inhibitor

Answer and topic summary

The answer is C. Beta-blockers

The patient has hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), which is a genetic disease of the heart muscle due to mutations in the sarcomere genes. It often presents with fatigue, dyspnea, chest pain, or syncope. The murmur on the physical exam is due to LV obstruction; it will be a harsh crescendo-decrescendo systolic murmur heard at the apex and LLSB. It’s important to keep in mind that the murmur intensity will decrease with more venous return (squatting) and increase with less venous return (Valsalva).

Diagnostic tests include an EKG, echocardiogram, and exercise stress testing. Treatment is indicated for symptomatic patients and includes a negative inotropic agent (i.e., nondihydropyridine CCBs or beta-blockers) and diuretics as needed for volume overload. If patients are refractory to medications, septal myectomy and percutaneous septal ablation can be performed.

View blueprint lesson

Smarty PANCE Content Blueprint Review:

Covered under ⇒ PANCE Blueprint CardiologyCardiomyopathyHypertrophic Cardiomyopathy

Also covered as part of the Pediatric Rotation EOR topic list

5. A 22-year-old female presents to the ER with crampy lower abdominal pain and vaginal bleeding for the past 2 hours. She missed her last menstrual cycle. The physical exam is remarkable for an open cervical os. No products of conception are observed. Which of the following is the most likely diagnosis?

A. Threatened abortion
B. Incomplete abortion
C. Missed abortion
D. Septic abortion
E. Inevitable abortion

Answer and topic summary

The answer is E. Inevitable abortion

The patient most likely has a spontaneous abortion, which is a nonviable intrauterine pregnancy up to 20 weeks gestation. The most common cause of miscarriages in the first trimester is chromosomal abnormalities. There are many different types of spontaneous abortions.

The patient specifically has an inevitable abortion, which typically presents with vaginal bleeding, crampy abdominal pain, and an open external cervical os without expulsion of products of conception. The fetus is not viable.

View blueprint lesson

Smarty PANCE Content Blueprint Review:

Covered under ⇒ PANCE Blueprint Reproductive SystemComplicated PregnancyAbortion

Also covered as part of the Women’s Health EOR topic list

6. Which of the following is not a risk factor for Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)?

A. Previous antibiotic use
B. Injection drug use
C. Indwelling hemodialysis catheter
D. Presence in long-term facility
E. All of the above are risk factors

Answer and topic summary

The answer is E. All of the above are risk factors 

Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infection is caused by a certain type of S. aureus that is resistant to several antibiotics. Risk factors include previous antibiotic use, injection drug use, indwelling hemodialysis catheter, living in a long-term care facility, HIV infection, and recent hospitalization.

The most common site for MRSA infections to occur is the skin/soft tissue. Oral antibiotics that cover MRSA include Bactrim, doxycycline, and clindamycin. For severe MRSA infections, IV vancomycin is preferred.

View blueprint lesson

Smarty PANCE Content Blueprint Review:

Covered under ⇒ PANCE Blueprint Infectious DiseaseBacterial DiseaseMethicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infection

7. A 60-year-old male presents with fatigue and weight loss. His physical exam is remarkable for gingival hyperplasia and splenomegaly. Labs reveal pancytopenia. A bone marrow biopsy reveals Auer rods. What is the likely diagnosis?

A. Acute myeloid leukemia
B. Acute lymphocytic leukemia
C. Chronic myeloid leukemia
D. Chronic lymphocytic leukemia
E. Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Answer and topic summary

The answer is A. Acute myeloid leukemia

The patient has acute myeloid leukemia (AML), which is a group of cancers that involve the myeloid precursor cells. It is characterized by clonal proliferation (excessive growth) of abnormal myeloid precursor cells. Risk factors include smoking and chemotherapy/radiation.

Clinical features include fatigue, pallor, weakness, bone pain, gingival bleeding, and organomegaly. Lab findings are variable but may include pancytopenia (decrease in RBCs, WBCs, and platelets), electrolyte derangements, and/or hypoxemia. The workup should include a peripheral blood smear and bone marrow biopsy. The bone marrow biopsy will classically show Auer rods and >20% blasts.

View blueprint lesson

Smarty PANCE Content Blueprint Review:

Covered under ⇒ PANCE Blueprint HematologyNeoplasms, premalignancies, and malignanciesAcute and chronic myelogenous leukemia

Also covered as part of the Internal Medicine EOR, Emergency Medicine EOR, Family Medicine EOR, and Pediatric EOR topic list

8. Giant Cell Arteritis: The Daily PANCE Blueprint

A 55-year-old female presents with right-sided headaches, jaw pain upon chewing, and mild dizziness for the past few months. On physical exam, the right temporal artery is tender to palpation. Labs reveal an elevated ESR and CRP. What is the definitive diagnosis for this condition?

A. CT head
B. Temporal artery biopsy
C. PET scan
D. Ultrasound
E. IgA antibody level

Answer and topic summary

The answer is B. Temporal artery biopsy

The patient has temporal arteritis, which is a vasculitis of large and medium vessels. Clinical features often include fever, fatigue, weight loss, headache, jaw claudication, and transient vision loss. The typical clinical vignette is an older female presenting with a headache and jaw claudication. On physical exam, you may appreciate a temporal artery that is thickened, tender, or erythematous.

ESR and CRP are sensitive, but not specific for the diagnosis. The definitive diagnosis of temporal arteritis is a temporal artery biopsy. Treatment is high-dose steroids. It’s important that temporal arteritis is treated because it can lead to blindness, thrombotic events, and other complications.

View blueprint lesson

Smarty PANCE Content Blueprint Review:

Covered under ⇒ PANCE Blueprint CardiologyVascular DiseaseGiant cell arteritis

Also covered as part of the Internal Medicine EOR topic list

9. Which of the following is one of the most common initial clinical symptoms in multiple sclerosis?

A. Vertigo
B. Extreme weakness
C. Depression
D. Arthralgias
E. Optic neuritis

Answer and topic summary

The answer is E. Optic neuritis

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a demyelinating disease of the central nervous system. There are many types of MS patterns. Clinical features suggestive of MS include sensory loss in limbs or one side of the face, gait/balance issues, heat sensitivity (Uhthoff), fatigue, and Lhermitte sign. The most common presenting symptom is optic neuritis.

MRI of the brain (+/- spinal cord) is the diagnostic test of choice. The McDonald diagnostic criteria can be used to help make the diagnosis of MS. Treatment of MS includes disease-modifying pharmacotherapy, such as glatiramer acetate (Copaxone), dimethyl fumarate, natalizumab (Tysabri), interferons, and many more. Acute exacerbations of MS are managed with short-term, high-dose glucocorticoids.

View blueprint lesson

Smarty PANCE Content Blueprint Review:

Covered under ⇒ PANCE Blueprint NeurologyNeuromuscular disordersMultiple sclerosis

Also covered as part of the Internal Medicine EOR topic list

10. A 52-year-old male presents to the clinic complaining of “sharp burning” in his lower chest after eating a large meal. The pain goes away when he raises the head of the bed. Which of the following is the best pharmacological agent for this likely diagnosis?

A. Esomeprazole
B. Nitroglycerin
C. Aspirin
D. Codeine
E. Sucralfate

Answer and topic summary

The answer is A. Esomeprazole

The patient has gastrointestinal reflux disease (GERD), which is a common condition characterized by stomach acid flowing up into the esophagus. Classic symptoms include heartburn (burning sensation around the sternum) after eating, water brash, regurgitation, and dysphagia.

The diagnosis is usually clinical; however, if the patient has alarming symptoms (e.g., weight loss, anemia, etc), it is appropriate to get an upper endoscopy. The gold standard is an ambulatory 24-hour pH monitoring system. Initial management includes weight loss, elevating the head of the bed, and eliminating triggers (spicy foods, chocolate, etc). Most recommend starting with histamine 2 receptor antagonist therapy first (e.g., ranitidine) and then transitioning to proton pump inhibitors (e.g., esomeprazole).

View blueprint lesson

Smarty PANCE Content Blueprint Review:

Covered under ⇒ PANCE Blueprint GI and NutritionEsophageal DisordersGastroesophageal reflux disease

Also covered as part of the Family Medicine EOR, Internal Medicine EOR, and Pediatric EOR topic list

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Download Interactive Content Blueprint Checklists for the PANCE, PANRE, EOR, and PANRE-LA

Follow this link to download your FREE copy of the PANCE/PANRE/EOR Content Blueprint Checklists.

Print it up and start crossing out the topics you understand, marking the ones you don’t, and making notes of key terms you should remember. The PDF version is interactive and linked directly to the individual lessons on Smarty PANCE.

The post Podcast Episode 101: Ten PANCE, PANRE, and Rotation Review Questions appeared first on The Audio PANCE and PANRE.

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