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P&T® Journal contents for January 2006

Features

Erlotinib (Tarceva) for patients with pancreatic cancer; nelarabine (Arranon) injection for leukemia and lymphoma; and sodium oxybate oral solution (Xyrem) for the treatment of narcolepsy are highlighted.
Marvin M. Goldenberg, PhD, RPh, MS
Dr. Wittbrodt emphasizes the urgent need for effective therapies for prolonged postoperative ileus, which is often associated with increased hospital costs and an extended length of stay for patients.
Eric Wittbrodt, PharmD, BCPS
Meeting Highlights
The Prescotts report on the use of extended-release niacin for dyslipidemic patients with HIV infection, a lipid-lowering combination of fenofibrate/ezetimibe for mixed hyperlipidemia, omega-3 fatty acids for overweight children, low-dose pravastatin for mild hypercholesterolemia, a strategy for women with acute coronary syndrome, low-molecular-weight heparin for ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (MI), pioglitazone for diabetic patients with previous MIs, and nesiritide and levosimendan (Simdax) for decompensated heart failure.
Lawrence M. Prescott, PhD, and Sharon L. Prescott
Advances in treating autism; Alzheimer’s disease; substance abuse; and movement disorders, including Huntington’s disease and Parkinson’s disease, by means of viral vector techniques, are presented.
Sonja Sherritze
This month, three of P&T’s editorial board members contribute reviews of books of interest to the health care community: Handbook of Clinically Tested Herbal Remedies, Volumes 1 and 2, by Marilyn Barrett, PhD, Editor, reviewed by Robert L. Barkin, MBA, PharmD; Dictionary of Pharmacy, by Dennis B. Worthen, PhD, Editor-in-Chief, reviewed by F. Randy Vogenberg, RPh, PhD; and Flashback by Gary Braver, reviewed by Art Shinn, PharmD.
Book Review
F. Randy Vogenberg reviews a new book by Michael P. Cecil, MD, that should be a resource for consumers, health care professionals, and Medicare-eligible beneficiaries despite some complications brought about by the new Medicare Part D regulations.
F. Randy Vogenberg, RPh, PhD
Health Care and Law
Pennsylvania becomes the newest state in which pharmacists will be playing a larger role in the drug prescription process: they will have the authority to adjust drug regimens, order laboratory and diagnostic tests, and administer medications.
Robert I. Field, JD, MPH, PhD
The authors discuss the extent of the problem of antibiotic resistance in the U.S., assess the clinical and economic ramifications of such resistance, and provide an overview of antibiotics currently available for the empirical treatment of out-patients with community-acquired RTIs.
John A. Sbarbaro, MD, MPH, David P. Nicolau, PharmD, and Carl Asche, PhD
Continuing Education Credit
The author reviews the current understanding of the pathophysiology of congestive heart failure (CHF) and discusses the paradigm shift in thinking about the role of beta blockers in CHF management.
Steven D. Hanks, MD, MMM, FACP
Dr. Goldenberg reviews letrozole (Femara) for early breast cancer, lenalidomide (Revlimid) for anemia, and abatacept (Orencia) for rheumatoid arthritis.
Marvin M. Goldenberg, PhD, RPh, MS
Doctors need help in assisting their patients to understand the new Part D rules. Patients need help to avoid being “scammed.” Dr. Stefanacci helps us sort it out.
Richard G. Stefanacci, DO, MGH, MBA, AGSF, CMD
The authors discuss the appropriate indications of PPIs and focus on the negative ramifications of the widespread and long-term use of these agents.
Co Q. D. Pham, BSC, BA, BScPharm, PharmD, Linda M. Sadowski-Hayes, PharmD, and Randolph E. Regal, BS, PharmD
Meeting Highlights
Topics covered include therapies for multiple myeloma, leukemia, sickle cell disease, and lymphoma.
Reuben B. David
The authors report on advances in the treatment of maxillary sinusitis, otitis media, skin and skin structure infections, diarrhea, gram-negative bacterial infections, zygomycosis, infectious mononucleosis, and combination therapy for HIV infection
Lawrence M. Prescott, PhD, and Sharon L. Prescott
Book Review
The essays in “Ethics and the Pharmaceutical Industry” address the complex inter relationships between drug companies, clinicians, patients, and advocacy groups.
Alan Kaell, MD
Dr. Goldenberg reviews cetuximab (Erbitux) combined with radiation therapy for cancer of the head and neck; sunitinib (Sutent) for gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs) and advanced kidney cancer; and sorafenib tosylate (Nexavar) for advanced renal cell carcinoma.
Marvin M. Goldenberg, PhD, RPh, MS
Meeting Highlights
The authors report on advances with morphine sulfate and oxymorphone for back pain, ziconotide for chronic pain, intranasal morphine and transdermal hydromorphone for postoperative pain, fentanyl tablets for cancer-related breakthrough pain, lower-dose epidural steroids for lumbar radiculopathy and spinal stenosis, and duloxetine for diabetic peripheral neuropathic pain.
Lawrence M. Prescott, PhD, and Sharon L. Prescott
Letter to the Editor
Continuing Education Credit
The authors discuss the fundamentals of epidemiology in the context of cohort studies, case-control studies, and experimental studies (clinical trials) and describe the importance of epidemiology in making formulary decisions.
David D. Dore, PharmD, PhD Candidate, E. Paul Larrat, MBA, PhD, and F. Randy Vogenberg, RPh, PhD
The authors present a study in which they sought to identify patterns of disparities in race and sex in the use of health care resources by Medicaid patients with COPD, a population composed predominantly of minorities, women, and children.
Fadia T. Shaya, PhD, MPH, Antoine C. El Khoury, PhD, Navendu D. Samant, BS, PhD Candidate, and Steven M. Scharf, MD, PhD

Departments

Editorial
David Nash, MD, MBA, discusses the potential of a new electronic database that would automatically monitor the safety and efficacy of drugs used under the Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan.
David Nash, MD, MBA
Prescription: Washington
Stephen Barlas discusses the “reconciliation bill” recently debated in Congress and the controversy over co-pays, tiered formularies, and benefits.
Stephen Barlas
Medication Errors
Matthew Grissinger, RPh, FASCP, suggests ways to involve non-clinical staff members, in addition to clinicians, in preventing errors that can occur when non-drug items are repackaged into empty containers.
Matthew Grissinger, RPh, FASCP
P&T presents the latest information about FDA approvals, drug indications, and new devices.
Drug Forecast
Tigecycline (Tygacil), a broad-spectrum intravenous antibiotic for bacterial infections, is featured.
Robert Harris, PharmD Candidate, and Martin Cruz, PharmD, CGP
Editorial
David Nash, MD, MBA, discusses the work of NICE, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence in the United Kingdom, and its implications for health care in the U.S.
David Nash, MD, MBA
Medication Errors
Matthew Grissinger, RPh, FASCP, dispels the notion that not punishing staff members who make mistakes increases carelessness and absolves workers from personal responsibility for patient safety.
Matthew Grissinger, RPh, FASCP
Prescription: Washington
Stephen Barlas discusses the reasons for the delay in bringing generic “biotech” drugs to the market.
Stephen Barlas
P&T presents the latest information about FDA approvals, drug indications, industry updates, and new devices.
Drug Forecast
Dr. Cruz and coauthors review duloxetine (Cymbalta) and its uses in depression, neuropathic pain, fibromyalgia, and stress urinary incontinence.
Martin P. Cruz, PharmD, CGP, Michelle E. Gonzales, PharmD, Jennifer Jacobs, PharmD, and Melinda Constante LaFave, PharmD
Editorial
David Nash, MD, MBA discusses the virtues of bar-coded medication administration, a powerful technology developed to prevent medical errors.
David Nash, MD, MBA
Medication Errors
Matthew Grissinger, RPh, FASCP, presents Part 2 of a survey on frequent and fatal errors in the workplace and the effects of warnings and sanctions on the rate of errors.
Matthew Grissinger, RPh, FASCP
Prescription: Washington
Stephen Barlas discusses the differences of opinion about the FDA’s new rule regarding changes to drug package inserts, which are intended to clarify information for physicians and patients.
Stephen Barlas
Drug Forecast
The authors review sildenafil citrate (Revatio) for the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension.
Amber Bell, PharmD Candidate, Myesha Davis, PharmD Candidate, Fran Close, PhD, Marlon Honeywell, PharmD, and Evans Branch III, PharmD

P&T presents the latest data on FDA approvals, indications, and industry updates.