Graduation Year


Document Type

Senior Thesis


Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Primary Major


Primary Minor

Community Action and Social Change

Thesis Advisor

Patricia Harris, PhD, RN, CNS



Ischemic stroke occurs in thousands of older adults throughout the year. Due to the lack of oxygen entering the brain, many patients experience a decline in cognitive function due to ischemic stroke. Cognition is the ability to understand, learn, and remember information which is needed for completing daily tasks. Modern technology has allowed for patients to survive ischemic strokes but has yet to provide proper screening tools and methods for stroke-related cognitive impairment.


To investigate the best practices for identifying, treating, and caring for patients with a cognitive injury related to a stroke. A review of the research literature will be performed and a proposal for further research will be provided.

Summary of Findings

Through the review of the research different types of screening tools were identified, which potentially could assist in determining whether or not a patient is experiencing declines in cognition after a stroke. Guided therapies and interventions used by stroke patients exhibited positive effects on their cognition. Self-management programs also provided beneficial outcomes for participants, which also has allowed them to be more active in their plan of care. Despite all the productive findings, further research should be conducted to support the studies' results and close the gaps within the research literature.


Through a mixed-method study that employs quantitative and qualitative methods, researchers will investigate the use of guided visualization and self-management training, implemented for patients by nurses. The goal is to determine the impact of these interventions to find the most effective for potentially improving the cognitive function of stroke patients.