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Am J Health Syst Pharm [journal]
- Literature review of interprofessional research on inpatient pharmacy operations. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Am J Health Syst Pharm 2013 Jun 1; 70(11):989-996.
- Development and implementation of a nurse-driven, sliding-scale nomogram for bivalirudin in the management of heparin-induced thrombocytopenia. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Am J Health Syst Pharm 2013 Jun 1; 70(11):980-987.
PURPOSE:A simplified dosing nomogram to assist nurses in adjusting the rate of i.v. bivalirudin administration in cases of heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT) is described.
SUMMARY:To facilitate the availability of argatroban as an alternative direct thrombin inhibitor (DTI) for patients with HIT at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center (OSUWMC), a team of clinical pharmacists developed a nomogram designed to simplify infusion dosage adjustments by nurses. In contrast to bivalirudin nomograms requiring patient-specific, percentage-based dose adjustments, the nomogram developed at OSUWMC specifies fixed adjustments (0.005 or 0.01 mg/kg/hr) according to the current activated partial thromboplastin time (aPTT) value relative to aPTT goals. During pilot testing over three years, the nomogram was used to guide dosage adjustments in 65 adult patients receiving continuous infusions of bivalirudin for suspected or confirmed HIT in intensive care units. Overall, the use of the nomogram resulted in adequate anticoagulation, with 53.7% of all measured aPTT values in the target range; 30.5% of aPTT values were below target, and 15.8% of values were above target. The median time to steady state was 11.0 hours (range, 5.0-31.8 hours), and bleeding rates were consistent with those reported in the literature. Nurse adherence to the nomogram was 100%, and no dosing errors occurred during a total of 487 dosage changes. Based on the pilot study results, the nomogram was refined to improve initial dosing for patients with creatinine clearance values of >30 mL/min; other refinements were made to enhance the safety of bivalirudin therapy for HIT in patients with severe renal impairment.
CONCLUSION:A nurse-driven, sliding-scale nomogram for bivalirudin therapy in patients with HIT provided a simple dosing protocol and resulted in a high rate of adherence by nurses.
- Formulary systems and pharmacy and therapeutics committees in the Western Pacific Region: Exploring two Basel Statements. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Am J Health Syst Pharm 2013 Jun 1; 70(11):967-979.
PURPOSE:The use of formulary systems and pharmacy and therapeutics (P&T) committees in the Western Pacific Region (WPR) and the factors associated with their use were explored.
METHODS:Minor additions were made to a previously validated survey and reviewed by a WPR advisory committee. The Basel Statements 26 and 27 survey was made available in eight languages and sent electronically to 1989 hospital pharmacy directors through respective hospital pharmacy associations in the WPR.
RESULTS:A total of 797 responses (40%) from 34 nations were received. Of these responses, 87% of hospitals (691 of 797) used a formulary. Also, 93% of respondents (619 of 664) indicated that their hospital had a P&T committee. However, only 44% of respondents (274 of 626) reported that more than half of their formulary medicines were linked to standard treatment guidelines. Furthermore, only 41% of hospitals (247 of 601) had a policy for off-label medication use. The pharmacy directors' perceived benefits of formularies were correlated with having more formulary medicines linked to standard treatment guidelines, basing their use on the best available evidence, and having a policy for the use of off-label medicines.
CONCLUSION:A large proportion of hospitals in the WPR have implemented formularies and P&T committees. Although formularies are commonly used, their effectiveness may be limited, as formularies are often not linked to standard treatment guidelines or the best available evidence.
- Comparative risk of bloodstream infection in hospitalized patients receiving intravenous medication by open, point-of-care, or closed delivery systems. [Journal Article]
- Am J Health Syst Pharm 2013 Jun 1; 70(11):957-65.
The impact of i.v. drug delivery via point-of-care (POC)-activated and closed systems versus traditional manual admixture systems on the risk of hospital-acquired bloodstream infection (BSI) is examined.Using data from a proprietary hospital database, a retrospective observational cohort study of patients receiving one or more i.v. drug administrations via POC-activated or closed systems during a three-year period (2007-09) was conducted. Cases of hospital-acquired BSI were identified using diagnosis codes and billing charges for blood cultures and antibiotic use. The risk of BSI in patients with exposure to POC-activated systems, closed systems, or both relative to that of patients exposed to open systems was estimated by odds ratios (ORs) calculated by multivariate logistic regression analysis.The evaluated data indicated that of the 4,073,864 patients included in the study cohort, 0.5% (n = 20,251) experienced hospital-acquired BSI. After adjusting for selected confounding variables, the use of POC-activated systems was associated with a 16% reduction in BSI risk relative to the use of open systems (OR, 0.84; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.76-0.93), and the use of closed systems correlated with a 12% risk reduction (OR, 0.88; 95% CI, 0.82-0.96). Patients who received i.v. drugs via both POC-activated and closed systems appeared to derive the greatest relative risk reduction benefit (OR, 0.12; 95% CI, 0.06-0.23).Use of POC-activated and closed systems for i.v. drug delivery was associated with a significantly reduced risk of hospital-acquired BSI compared with exclusive use of open systems in a large population of hospitalized patients.
- Health literacy: A primer for pharmacists. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Am J Health Syst Pharm 2013 Jun 1; 70(11):949-955.
PURPOSE:The literature surrounding health literacy and its importance in everyday practice are reviewed.
SUMMARY:Health literacy includes a patient's reading, writing, and numeracy skills, as well as his or her cultural experiences, understanding of health concepts and pathophysiology, and basic communication skills. Over one third of the American population lack the skills necessary to understand health information, make health care decisions, or follow medication instructions. Independent risk factors for low health literacy include poor socioeconomic status, ethnicity, older age, and limited education. Mounting evidence suggests that low health literacy leads to poor health outcomes, increased mortality, increases in health care costs, and poorly self-managed chronic diseases. Communication with a pharmacist to gain clarification of medication instructions is often the last opportunity to ensure that patients understand how to use their medications appropriately. Low health literacy is not always easily recognized, as patients use well-practiced coping mechanisms or avoidant behaviors. Clear communication strategies help patients become more involved in their care plans and increase positive interactions. Tools to assess health literacy have been developed and can be used by pharmacists to guide education and counseling. Advanced methods of written and oral communication should be used to improve patient comprehension and understanding.
CONCLUSION:Tools such as simple word-recognition tests or comprehensive tests of functional health literacy can be used in daily practice to assess patients' health literacy. Being familiar with communication techniques such as the Indian Health Service, teach back, and Ask Me 3 can help facilitate individualized medication-related education and maximize patient comprehension.
- Crizotinib for the treatment of non-small-cell lung cancer. [Journal Article]
- Am J Health Syst Pharm 2013 Jun 1; 70(11):943-7.
The pharmacology, pharmacokinetics, clinical efficacy, safety, adverse effects, and dosage and administration of crizotinib in the management of non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) are reviewed.Crizotinib (Xalkori, Pfizer Inc.) is a novel tyrosine kinase inhibitor approved for the treatment of patients with locally advanced or metastatic NSCLC who exhibit assay-confirmed mutations of the gene coding for anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK). The primary biochemical mechanism of crizotinib is to inhibit ALK expression, leading to increased cell proliferation and decreased apoptosis. Crizotinib is metabolized and excreted after O-dealkylation by cytochrome P-450 (CYP) isoenzyme 3A4/5; as crizotinib is also an inhibitor of CYP3A4/5, its use entails a high potential for drug interactions, including confirmed interactions with ketoconazole and rifampin that can alter crizotinib pharmacokinetics. A Phase I trial involving patients with ALK gene mutation-positive NSCLC demonstrated significant disease control with oral crizotinib use, including an overall eight-week response rate of 87% and an estimated six-month survival of 72%. At the standard dosage of 250 mg twice daily, crizotinib is well tolerated. In clinical trials to date, the most common grade 1 or 2 adverse events were nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, and visual disturbances; more severe toxicities included transaminase elevations (less than 7% of patients) and pneumonitis (less than 2% of patients). Hypogonadism leading to low testosterone levels appears to be universal among male patients treated with crizotinib.Crizotinib appears to be efficacious and well tolerated in patients with NSCLC and may have future potential applications in treating lymphomas and other cancers driven by ALK or c-MET gene mutations.
- Pneumonia due to multidrug-resistant Leclercia adecarboxylata. [Journal Article]
- Am J Health Syst Pharm 2013 Jun 1; 70(11):940.
- Effect of changing insulin injection site on glycemic variability. [Journal Article]
- Am J Health Syst Pharm 2013 Jun 1; 70(11):938-40.
- Characterization of the pharmacy chief resident position. [Journal Article]
- Am J Health Syst Pharm 2013 Jun 1; 70(11):937-8.
- Physical compatibility of sodium citrate with alcohol and cefepime. [Journal Article]
- Am J Health Syst Pharm 2013 Jun 1; 70(11):932-7.