Take 60 seconds to review all the latest pharmacology facts released on our social media platforms over the past week. These are the essential, most fundamental facts that students who study medicines should commit to memory.
- Bupivacaine is used as a local anaesthetic. Its effects can be prolonged when administered with epinephrine. Epinephrine works to reduce systemic absorption, keeping the drug at the local site.
- Lactulose can be used to treat constipation and hepatic encephalopathy. Side effects with lactulose include abdominal bloating and cramps.
- Flucytosine – an antifungal drug - is associated with bone marrow suppression, loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting and elevated liver enzymes. Some patients also experience CNS effects such as paraesthesia, psychosis and peripheral neuropathy.
- Ribavirin is an antiviral medicine used to treat hepatitis C, human respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and viral haemorrhagic fever. Its mechanism of action is not entirely understood.
- Irinotecan is predominantly used to treat cancers of the colon and rectum. It works as a topoisomerase I inhibitor. Memory tool: ‘Irinotecan – colon’.
- Tranexamic acid is a synthetic analogue of the amino acid lysine; a drug used to prevent blood loss in cases of surgery, tooth removal, and menstruation, for example. Lysine receptor sites, the sites to which it binds, are found on the plasma proteins, plasmin and plasminogen.
- Iohexol is a contrast agent used during certain medical procedures, such as X-rays. Potential side effects include skin flushing, vomiting, low blood pressure, headache, and kidney problems.
- Clomiphene promotes ovulation, a drug used to treat infertility in women. Potential side effects include pelvic pain, hot flushes, vision changes and difficulty sleeping.
- Xylometazoline alleviates the symptoms of nasal congestion, allergic rhinitis and sinusitis. It is only available in intranasal formulation.
- Anastrozole is used to treat breast cancer in postmenopausal women; it works in part by lowering estrogen levels.
- Haloperidol is a typical antipsychotic medicine used in the treatment of schizophrenia, Tourette’s syndrome (tics), mania (in bipolar disorder), psychosis, hallucinations, agitation and delirium. Side effects are many, and include extrapyramidal side effects, hypotension, anticholinergic side effects (constipation, dry mouth and blurred vision) and somnolence.
Mnemonics and mindmaps are also another great way to commit pharmacology to memory. But if you’d like to learn more about specific drug classes, check out these more detailed articles for more information.
Take two minutes to check out last week's facts here!