Optimizing Medication Therapy & Improving Outcomes

May 31, 2017

Whooping Cough (Pertussis)

Whooping cough (pertussis) is a highly contagious acute respiratory tract infection caused by Bordetella pertussis bacteria. Once diagnosed, treatment involves the use of antimicrobial therapy, particularly macrolide antibiotics. With appropriate antibiotic therapy, deaths associated with pertussis are uncommon in infants. Prevention in adults is managed through scheduled vaccinations. Before a vaccine was developed, pertussis was primarily considered a childhood disease. Now, pertussis primarily affects children too young to have completed the full course of vaccinations and teenagers and adults whose immunity has diminished over the years. It is important for pregnant women and other people who will have close contact with an infant to be vaccinated against pertussis. Read more.

Nocturnal Enuresis in Children

Nocturnal enuresis can be frustrating for children and their families as the child ages, but clinical intervention generally is not warranted until the child is 5 to 7 years old. If nocturnal enuresis is left untreated, resolving the problem can become more difficult. A diagnosis of nocturnal enuresis requires careful coordination of both the patient and the family for optimal outcomes and to avoid relapse. Many treatment plans are founded on motivational therapy and enuresis alarms. Desmopressin and imipramine are FDA-approved for the treatment of nocturnal enuresis in patients older than 6 years. Use of these medications requires thorough counseling by a pharmacist to ensure that the family understands that these medications cannot cure nocturnal enuresis, but are used only for symptom treatment. Read more.

Increasing Awareness About Mumps and the Importance of
Vaccination (2 CE Credits)

Mumps, an acute, systemic disease caused by Paramyxovirus, is characterized by the swelling of one or both parotid glands. Transmission occurs via contact with respiratory secretions or saliva, and incubation is usually 16 to 18 days. Serious but rare complications include orchitis, meningitis, and pancreatitis. There are no antiviral agents for treatment of the mumps virus; however, supportive therapy may be used for symptoms such as headaches, fever, or pain. Vaccination is still the best measure for preventing mumps, and the vaccine is a combination product containing measles, mumps, and rubella viruses. Pharmacists can play a key role in educating people about mumps and the importance of vaccination, and they can also become certified to administer vaccines in a variety of settings. Read more.

Medication Therapy Management in the News

Topical Steroid Prescriptions, Costs Growing for Medicare Patients

According to a study published in JAMA Dermatology, total Medicare Part D spending between 2011 and 2015 increased by 226.5%, while patients’ annual out-of-pocket spending increased by 45.9%. Read more.

Little Difference in How Much Two Zinc Lozenges Shorten Cold Duration

Zinc acetate lozenges and zinc gluconate lozenges have about the same efficacy in curtailing common cold symptoms, according to a study published in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine Open. Read more

Ketamine Appears to Help Depression in Large-Scale Study

Depression was reported half as often among more than 41,000 patients who took ketamine, as compared to patients who took any other drug or drug combination for pain. Read more.

Not Enough U.S. Adults Get Recommended Vaccines

The prevalence of illness attributable to vaccine-preventable diseases is greater among adults aged 19 years or older than among children aged 12 years and younger. Read more.