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Family Health Assessment and patterns for examination

When I first received a task to conduct a family health assessment I immediately thought of the Browns. This family lives two blocks from our house. It consists of five members, two parents, two children, and one old woman. Mr. Sam Brown is 44 and he works as a plumber. Mrs. Judy Smith is 43 and she works as salesperson at the meat store. Their older child’s name is Rick. He is 24 and he studies arts at the academy. Their daughter’s name is Christina. She is 14 and she studies at school. The old woman is the mother of Mrs. Judy Smith. Her name is Karen De Souza. She is 60, and she is retired. The Browns can be an interesting subject for family health assessment because there are three generations in their family. This paper will assess their health with the help of Gordon’s functional patterns.


The first pattern for the examination is health perception and management. Mr. Sam Brown admitted that his general health is rather stable. He does not get colds often but he is allergic to different substances. At the same time, Mr. Brown has been a smoker for the last twenty years. He states that he does not notice that his unhealthy habit causes harm to him. He prefers to ignore frequent coughing spells he has. Mrs. Brown has high blood pressure that she claims to have inherited from her mother. However, she does not limit herself in coffee consumption. She admitted to having food poisoning last week. To deal with it, she drank some medicine and did not visit a doctor. Mrs. Karen De Souza has high blood pressure and high degree of myopia, which is defective eyesight. She checks her eyesight two times a year. Both Rick and Christina claim they are healthy and nothing bothers them. They exercise in the morning and believe that is their main strategy to stay healthy.

The next pattern for examination is nutritional metabolic. The typical dietary intake of the family consists of fats. They consume much cheese, pork, chicken meat, eggs, bread, cookies, and chocolate. In the future, this diet is likely to cause poor assimilation of protein, calcium, and magnesium. It can also lead to digestive disorders. Meanwhile, the family has a rather high daily fluid intake. The Browns agreed that they drink two bottles of water each daily. With the dies rich in fats, the Browns look a bit overweighed. The family claims to have stable weight with no severe losses or gains. Accordingly, there are no complaints about bad appetite in this family. The family uses services of their family dentist, so their teeth are in good condition. Closer examination does not reveal any signs of caries.

The next pattern for examination is elimination. All the family members admitted to having regular bowel and urinary elimination. They said that they have no problems with bowel control and no type of discomfort. There are no complaints about excess perspiration and odour problems as well. Furthermore, it looked as though the family was embarrassed to talk about these matters with the student.

The next pattern for examination is activity and exercise. Mr. Brown said that he likes jogging every day. He does not miss any of his jogs with the exception of very rainy days. Mrs. Brown stated she likes to go for walks. Her work is located not far from her home, so she prefers walking to get to her workplace. Mrs. Karen De Souza said she is not in a good age for exercising and did not want to speak more about it. Rick said he liked to play basketball and soccer with his friends. Meanwhile, Christina said she goes to a dancing studio three times a week and it constitutes most of her physical activity.

Sleep and rest were examined next. Mr. and Mrs. Brown reported being generally rested and ready for activity after sleep. They said that their sleep routine constituted seven to eight hours a day. Besides, they were likely to sleep more during the weekend and their days off. Rick and Christina said something similar. Also, they said they were prone to early awakening as both of them still study. Nevertheless, Mrs. Karen De Souza said she has insomnia sometimes. She said that she is worrying about many things that prevent her from sleeping. She has been taking pills against insomnia for about two years now.

The next pattern for consideration is cognitive-perceptual. Mr. Brown said that he did not have problems with neither hearing nor vision. Mrs. Brown claimed that sometimes she did have problems with concentration and making decisions. She admitted that she could not remember what she did two weeks ago on her weekend. She said that such things were not new to her. She admitted that she could also forget names of new acquaintances as well as her coworkers. Still, she said she could live with that. Rick said that sometimes he felt his eyes geting tired after several hours at the computer screen. However, he does not claim to have any vision impairments. His sister Christina stated that she did not have memory problems but she had bad memory for dates. The best way for her to learn new things was associative thinking. Unfortunately, she could not apply it to historical dates. As mentioned earlier, Mrs. Karen De Souza wears glasses as she has a developed myopia.

Self-perception was examined next. Mr. Brown describes himself as a handsome middle-aged man. He seems to be satisfied with his appearance and personality. He thinks that he managed to fulfill many of his desires and so he is a winner in life. Mrs. Brown thinks that she is attractive but overweighed. She wishes to be slim and look better than she does today. Meanwhile, her smile and eyes are the matter of pride for her and she thinks they make her very pretty. Mrs. Karen De Souza is very content with herself. She said that looks do not matter in her age and that she has a beautiful soul. Rick and Christina said they are the best as they are very popular among their peers.

The next pattern for analysis is role relationship. As the family lives together, each family member can make their own contribution. Mr. and Mrs. Brown believe they are the breadwinners of the family. If one of them gets ill, the rest of the family do all they can to help them recover. Mrs. Karen De Souza believes that her role is to support other members of the family. She comforts everyone when needed. Christina is the one that waters the flowers in all rooms. If she gets ill, Rick does it for her.

Sexuality is another pattern for assessment. Only Mr. and Mrs. Brown were willing to talk about this pattern. They said that their sexual relationship was satisfying. They said that the frequency and quality has changed over the years. Additionally, they said that they did not plan more childrenand so they used contraception.

The final pattern for examination is coping-stress tolerance. Mr. and Mrs. Brown said that their life is rather stable now. They are both professionals so they do not face many stresses there. They also do not quarrel much at home. Meanwhile, Rick and Christina are rather tense most of the time. They find recognition among their teachers and peers. When they face big problems in their everyday life, they tend to ask their parents for advice.

To conclude, the first wellness nursing diagnosis for the Browns’ family is to change their diet. They have to change it to avoid health problems in the future. They should add more food rich in proteins. The second wellness nursing diagnosis is to engage in physical activity together. They can organize family soccer cups, for instance. Family sport activity would contribute to better relations in the family, release tension of the children, and promote dealing with extra pounds.



1) What is your health condition in general?
2) What keeps you healthy?
3) What do you think caused current illnesses?
4) How does your typical daily food intake look like?
5) How does your typical daily fluid intake look like?
6) How would you describe the condition of your teeth?
7) What is your bowel and urinary elimination pattern?
8) What is your exercise pattern?
9) What is the regularity of your physical activity and/or exercises?
10) What describes you best: sleep problems, late sleeping, or early awakening?
11) What is your sleep routine?
12) How would you describe your hearing and vision?
13) How would you describe your memory?
14) How do you treat yourself? Are you satisfied with yourself?
15) What is the best thing about your family relationship?
16) What do you do as a part of a family?
17) How other family members deal with your illnesses?
18) How would you describe your sexual activity?
19) How do you cope with stress?
20) What adds stress to your life?

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