NR511: Differential Diagnosis and Primary Care Assignment

NR511: Differential Diagnosis and Primary Care Assignment

A 19-year-old male freshman college student presents to the student health center today with complaints of bilateral eye discomfort. Upon further questioning you discover the following subjective information regarding the chief complaint.NR511: Differential Diagnosis and Primary Care Assignment

History of Present Illness
Onset 2-3 days ago
Location Both eyes
Duration Constant
Characteristics Both eyes feel "gritty" with mild to moderate amount of discomfort. Further describes the gritty sensation "like sand caught in your eye"
Aggravating factors None identified
Relieving factors None identified
Treatments Tried OTC visine drops once yesterday which temporarily improved the redness but the gritty sensation, tearing and itching remained.NR511: Differential Diagnosis and Primary Care Assignment


Severity Level of discomfort is 2/10 on pain scale


Review of Systems (ROS)
Constitutional Denies fever, chills, or recent illnesses


Eyes Denies contact lenses or glasses, has never experienced these symptoms previously. Last eye exam was "a few years ago". Denies eye injury, trauma, visual changes or dryness. Denies crusting of lids or mucoid or purulent drainage. Bilateral symptoms of +redness, +itching, +tearing + FB sensation.
Ears -otalgia, -otorrhea
Nose +occasional runny nose with intermittent nasal congestion, denies sneezing. History of seasonal nasal allergies which is aggravated in the spring but is well controlled on loratadine and fluticasone nasal spray taken during peak season (he is not taking either right now).NR511: Differential Diagnosis and Primary Care Assignment
Throat Denies ST and redness
Neck Denies lymph node tenderness or swelling
Chest Denies cough, SOB and wheezing
Heart Denies chest pain


Medications Loratadine 10mg daily and fluticasone nasal spray daily (only takes during the spring months when nasal allergies flare)NR511: Differential Diagnosis and Primary Care Assignment
PMH Seasonal allergic rhinitis with springtime triggers
PSH None
Allergies None
Social Freshman student at the University of Awesome located in central Illinois. Home is in Phoenix.
Habits Denies cigarettes +recreational marijuana use +drinks 3-6 beers per weekend
FH Adopted, does not know biological parents history

Physical exam reveals the following.NR511: Differential Diagnosis and Primary Care Assignment

Physical Exam
Constitutional Young adult male in NAD, alert and oriented, cooperative
VS Temp-97.9, P-68, R-16, BP 120/75, Height 6'0, Weight 195 pounds
Head Normocephalic
Eyes Visual Acuity 20/20 (uncorrected) OU. PERRL with white sclera bilaterally. Slight light sensitivity noted bilaterally. No crusting, lesions or masses on lids noted. Bilateral conjunctiva with diffuse redness and tearing but no mucoid or purulent drainage noted. No visible FBs under lids or on cornea to gross examination.

Fundiscopic examination: Discs flat with sharp margins. Vessels present in all quadrants without crossing defects. Retinal background has even color, no hemorrhages noted. Macula has even color.NR511: Differential Diagnosis and Primary Care Assignment

Ears Tympanic membranes gray and intact with light reflex noted. Pinna and tragus nontender.
Nose Nares patent. Nasal turbinates are pale and boggy with mild to moderate swelling. Nasal drainage is clear.
Throat Oropharynx moist, no lesions or exudate. Tonsils ¼ bilaterally. Teeth in good repair, no cavities noted.
Neck Neck supple. No lymphadenopathy. Thyroid midline, small and firm without palpable masses.
Cardiopulmonary Heart S1 and S2 noted, no murmurs, noted. Lungs clear to auscultation bilaterally. Respirations unlabored.
  1. Briefly and concisely summarize the history and physical (H&P) findings as if you were presenting it to your preceptor using the pertinent facts from the case. Use shorthand where possible and approved medical abbreviations. Avoid redundancy and irrelevant information.
  2. Provide a differential diagnosis (minimum of 3) which might explain the patient's chief complaint along with a brief statement of pathophysiology for each.
  3. Analyze the differential by using the pertinent findings from the history and physical to argue for or against a diagnosis.NR511: Differential Diagnosis and Primary Care Assignment
  4. Rank the differential in order of most likely to least likely.
  5. Identify any additional tests and/or procedures that you feel is necessary or needed to help you narrow your differential. All testing decisions must be supported with an evidence-based medicine (EBM) argument as to why it is necessary or pertinent in this case. If no testing is indicated or needed, you must also support this decision with EBM evidence.NR511: Differential Diagnosis and Primary Care Assignment