Concept 02: Functional Ability
Giddens: Concepts for Nursing Practice, 2nd Edition
1. The nurse is assessing a patient’s functional ability. Which patient best demonstrates the
definition of functional ability?
a. Considers self as a healthy individual; uses cane for stability
b. College educated; travels frequently; can balance a checkbook
c. Works out daily, reads well, cooks, and cleans house on the weekends
d. Healthy individual, volunteers at church, works part time, takes care of family and
Functional ability refers to the individual’s ability to perform the normal daily activities
required to meet basic needs; fulfill usual roles in the family, workplace, and community; and
maintain health and well-being. The other options are good; however, healthy individual,
church volunteer, part time worker, and the patient who takes care of the family and house
fully meets the criteria for functional ability.
REF: Page 13
OBJ: NCLEX® Client Needs Category: Physiological Integrity: Basic Care and Comfort
2. The nurse is assessing a patient’s functional performance. What assessment parameters will be
most important in this assessment?
a. Continence assessment, gait assessment, feeding assessment, dressing assessment,
b. Height, weight, body mass index (BMI), vital signs assessment
c. Sleep assessment, energy assessment, memory assessment, concentration
d. Health and well-being, amount of community volunteer time, working outside the
home, and ability to care for family and house
Functional impairment, disability, or handicap refers to varying degrees of an individual’s
inability to perform the tasks required to complete normal life activities without assistance.
Height, weight, BMI, and vital signs are part of a physical assessment. Sleep, energy,
memory, and concentration are part of a depression screening. Healthy, volunteering,
working, and caring for family and house are functional abilities, not performance.
REF: Page 13
OBJ: NCLEX® Client Needs Category: Physiological Integrity: Reduction of Risk Potential
3. The nurse is assessing a patient with a mobility dysfunction and wants to gain insight into the
patient’s functional ability. What question would be the most appropriate?
a. “Are you able to shop for yourself?”
b. “Do you use a cane, walker, or wheelchair to ambulate?”
c. “Do you know what today’s date is?”
d. “Were you sad or depressed more than once in the last 3 days?”