International Journal of Risk & Safety in Medicine - Volume 33, issue 1
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The International Journal of Risk and Safety in Medicine is concerned with rendering the practice of medicine as safe as it can be; that involves promoting the highest possible quality of care, but also examining how those risks which are inevitable can be contained and managed.
This is not exclusively a drugs journal. Recently it was decided to include in the subtitle of the journal three items to better indicate the scope of the journal, i.e. patient safety, pharmacovigilance and liability and the Editorial Board was adjusted accordingly. For each of these sections an Associate Editor was invited. We especially want to emphasize patient safety. Our journal wants to publish high quality interdisciplinary papers related to patient safety, not the ones for domain specialists. For quite some time we have also been devoting some pages in every issue to what we simply call WHO news. This affinity with WHO underlines both the International character of the journal and the subject matter we want to cover. Basic research, reports of clinical experience and overviews will all be considered for publication, but since major reviews of the literature are often written at the invitation of the Editorial Board it is generally advisable to consult with the Editor in advance. Submission of news items will be appreciated, as will be the contribution of letters on topics which have been dealt with in the journal.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Reducing interpersonal contact has been one of the least expensive and most widely used COVID-19 control strategies. OBJECTIVE: This systematic review has been conducted with the aim of identifying social distancing strategies and policies and their impact on the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: In order to compile this systematic review, Google Scholar, PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, Science Direct, Magiran, SID, and Irandoc databases were searched from the COVID-19 outbreak until March 2021. Keywords included “social”, “physical”, “distance”, “outbreak”, “incidence”, “prevalence”, “spread”, “new case”, “death*”, “mortality*”, “morbidity*” , “covid-19”, “coronavirus”, “sars-cov-2” and “time series*”. The articles…were qualitatively evaluated by two researchers using the STROBE tool. Finally, the study data were divided into three conceptual categories by three researchers, who then agreed on one category. The practical suggestions were also categorized in the same way. RESULTS: The policies and strategies adopted to implement social distancing were included in five categories of restrictions, prohibitions, closures, incentives, and punishments. Transportation and travel restrictions, crowded places and schools closure, use of telecommunications and virtual communications, and financial and psychological support to society members were the main policies in this area. CONCLUSION: Rapid and complete vaccination of all people around the world is out of reach, therefore social distancing and the implementation of physical restraints, especially in crowded and densely populated environments, should be done extensively until COVID-19 is eradicated.
Keywords: Social distance, new cases, death, COVID-19, coronavirus, time series, health
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Pheniramine abuse is reported not only in patients with psychiatric disorders but also in the general population. CASE REPORT: We report a case of pheniramine dependence in a patient with obsessive-compulsive disorder. The patient took about 250 mg orally daily and injected about 90 mg every week from the last six months. It reduced his anxiety, was cheaper than his other psychiatric medications, and free of stigma. He had lethargy, headache, uneasiness, anxiety, and poor sleep as withdrawal symptoms. RESULTS: This case highlights the vulnerability of those with psychiatric disorders towards pheniramine abuse. Hence, this report advocates…the strict evaluation of over-the-counter drugs for patients with pre-existing psychiatric disorders.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Individuals with diabetes mellitus (DM) may be susceptible to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID)-induced acute kidney injury (AKI) but data on NSAID-related adverse renal events is sparse. OBJECTIVE: We aimed to evaluate the risk of acute kidney injury and/or hyperkalemia after systemic NSAID among individuals with DM and diabetic chronic kidney disease (CKD). METHODS: Retrospective cohort study of 3896 adults with DM with incident prescriptions between July 2015 and December 2017 from Singapore General Hospital and SingHealth Polyclinics. Laboratory, hospitalization and medication data were retrieved from electronic medical records. The primary outcome was the incidence of…AKI and/ or hyperkalemia within 30 days after prescription. RESULTS: AKI and/or hyperkalemia occurred in 13.5% of all DM and 15.8% of diabetic CKD. The association between systemic NSAID >14 days and 30-day risk of AKI and/or hyperkalemia failed to reach statistical significance in unselected DM (adjusted OR 1.62, 95% CI 0.99–2.65, p = 0.05) and diabetic CKD (adjusted OR 0.64, 95% CI 0.15–2.82, p = 0.64), but the odds of AKI and/or hyperkalemia were markedly and significantly increased when NSAID was prescribed with renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) blocker (adjusted OR 4.17, 95% CI 1.74–9.98, p = 0.001) or diuretic (adjusted OR 3.31, 95% CI 1.09–10.08, p = 0.04) and in the absence of diabetic CKD (adjusted OR 1.98, 95% CI 1.16–3.36, p = 0.01). CONCLUSION: NSAID prescription >14 days in individuals with DM with concurrent RAAS blockers or diuretics was associated with higher 30-day risk of AKI and/or hyperkalemia.
Keywords: NSAID, COX II inhibitor, renal failure, diabetes
Abstract: BACKGROUND: The majority of antidepressants inhibit serotonin reuptake and include the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), and the serotonin reuptake inhibiting tricyclic antidepressants. OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to investigate and describe the range and impact of reported adverse visual effects linked to serotonin reuptake inhibiting antidepressants. METHODS: Using data from a global database of patient spontaneous reports of drug adverse events, we systematically identified eligible reports of visual problems linked to the use of serotonin reuptake inhibiting antidepressants. We analyzed these data using simple descriptive statistics to present the…range and impact. RESULTS: We identified 124 reports of visual problems. Reports originate from 18 countries and involve 11 different drugs. The most commonly reported symptoms were vision blurred/visual acuity reduced (n = 79, 63.7%), night blindness (n = 22, 17.7%), vitreous floaters (n = 21, 16.9%), photophobia (n = 19, 15.3%), diplopia (n = 15, 12.1%), palinopsia (n = 13, 10.5%), visual field defect (n = 12, 9.7%), photopsia (n = 11, 8.9%) and visual snow syndrome (n = 11, 8.9%). 74 patients indicated that the side effect was bad enough to affect everyday activities, 62 had sought health care, and 50 indicated that their work had been affected. 49 patients reported an enduring vision problem after discontinuation of treatment. CONCLUSIONS: The data suggest that serotonin reuptake inhibiting antidepressants can produce a range of adverse effects on vision that in some cases can be long-lasting after discontinuation of the drug. Further efforts are needed to understand the mechanisms involved, the incidence among those prescribed these medications, and identify any risk or mitigation factors.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: When more than one drug is manufactured at a shared facility or equipment in pharmaceutical manufacturing, the potential carry-over of the retained residue of existing drug product on product contact parts of the equipment to the next product can be a source of cross contamination. Permitted daily exposure (PDE) is derived based on the complete nonclinical and clinical data available and is a dose that is unlikely to cause adverse effects if an individual is exposed, by any route, at or below this dose every day over a lifetime. OBJECTIVE: The objective was to present a comprehensive…review of available scientific knowledge for derivation of PDE. METHODS: PubMed and ScienceDirect databases were searched using keywords “PDE” and “pharmaceuticals” and all the relevant literature up to March 2021 was reviewed. We have also calculated PDEs for Tobramycin (CAS No. 32986-56-4) and Acetyl Salicylic Acid (ASA, CAS No. 50-78-2). RESULTS: This research will be useful for scientists working in the PDE domain. The given examples emphasize the importance of use of human data in calculating PDE. CONCLUSION: The duty of the risk assessor entrusted with setting PDEs is to derive a data driven, scientifically justified value that is safe for patients, while avoiding unjustified conservativeness that puts unnecessary burden on manufacturing.
Keywords: HBEL, ADE, PDE, health based exposure limit, acceptable daily exposure, permitted daily exposure
Abstract: BACKGROUND: A set of enduring conditions have been reported in the literature involving persistent sexual dysfunction after discontinuation of serotonin reuptake inhibiting antidepressants, 5 alpha-reductase inhibitors and isotretinoin. OBJECTIVE: To develop diagnostic criteria for post-SSRI sexual dysfunction (PSSD), persistent genital arousal disorder (PGAD) following serotonin reuptake inhibitors, post-finasteride syndrome (PFS) and post-retinoid sexual dysfunction (PRSD). METHODS: The original draft was designed using data from two published case series (Hogan et al., 2014 and Healy et al., 2018), which represent the largest public collections of data on these enduring conditions. It was further developed with the involvement of a…multidisciplinary panel of experts. RESULTS: A set of criteria were agreed upon for each of the above conditions. Features of PSSD, PFS and PRSD commonly include decreased genital and orgasmic sensation, decreased sexual desire and erectile dysfunction. Ancillary non-sexual symptoms vary depending on the specific condition but can include emotional blunting and cognitive impairment. PGAD presents with an almost mirror image of unwanted sensations of genital arousal or irritability in the absence of sexual desire. A new term, post-SSRI asexuality, is introduced to describe a dampening of sexual interest and pleasure resulting from a pre-natal or pre-teen exposure to a serotonin reuptake inhibitor. CONCLUSIONS: These criteria will help in both clinical and research settings. As with all criteria, they will likely need modification in the light of developments.
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Governmental regulations of drug registration and licensing are not always followed by healthcare providers. OBJECTIVE: To explore the global research growth and patterns on systemic use of off-label and unlicensed drugs to gain knowledge about the magnitude of the problem and the main research themes encountered in this field. METHODS: SciVerse Scopus was searched for papers on off-label and unlicensed drug use from 1990 until December 31, 2020, without any language limitations. A bibliometric methodology was adopted to present the following indicators: top-cited documents, the most productive countries, top active journals, international research collaboration, the…most frequent author keywords, and research themes. RESULTS: The search query returned 1320 papers with an h-index of 66, published in 721 different journals. The Hospital Pharmacy journal ranked first (n = 43, 3.3%). In total, 5777 authors (median = 3) from 85 different countries contributed to the retrieved papers. The USA (n = 381, 28.9%) ranked first, followed distantly by Germany and Italy. The percentage of documents with international authors for active countries was from 8.8% for China to 42.3% for the Netherlands. The most frequent author keyword next to off-label was children/pediatrics. The keyword unlicensed was less frequently encountered than that for off-label. Major research themes in the retrieved papers focused on off-label drug use in hospitalized children/pediatrics, biological drugs such as rituximab and rFVIIa, psychiatric disorders, regulations, and questionnaire-based knowledge/attitude studies among community pharmacists and physicians. CONCLUSIONS: Research activity on off-label drug use has witnessed a general increase in the past two decades. The major research theme was off-label drug use in hospitalized children/pediatrics/neonates. The USA and certain European countries made a major contribution to this field.