Drugs in medicine


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Introduction Donepezil is an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor. The introduction of Acetylcholinesterase inhibitors (AChEI) in 1997 had a great impact in the management of Alzheimer's disease (AD), (Birks, 2006). AChEI are usually…

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Inhaled Corticosteroids

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Introduction Inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) are used for their anti-inflammatory effects in asthma and COPD. They are available as single agents, or in combination with other inhaled medications, such as beta-agonists…

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There are loads of types of inhalers! You need to be able to tell a patient how to use each type, and what type of drugs can go in each…

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Leukotriene Antagonists

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Introduction These are given in oral tablet form and are used to treat severe chronic asthma. They are only ever used in conjunction with corticosteroids. Mechanism They block the LTD4…

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Loop Diuretics

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Introduction Loop diuretics are the strongest type of diuretic - they cause an increase in the excretion of sodium and water from the kidney. They are very effective, and prevent the…

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Memantine is an N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) antagonist and is licensed for use in moderate-severe Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Mechanism of Action Memantine is an NMDA antagonist (AKA Glutamate receptor antagonist) NMDA receptor…

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Mood Stabilisers

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Mood Stabilisers e.g. lithium, valproate, gabapentin, carbamazepine These are mainly used to treat bipolar disorder although they may be used in lots of other psychiatric conditions. Lithium Lithium has a…

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A vial of Morphine


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Introduction Morphine is a commonly used analgesic in acute and chronic pain. It has been around for a very long time! It can be given intravenously, intramuscularly and orally. In…

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Nausea and Vomiting in Palliative Care

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Nausea = sensation of the desire to vomit Vomiting = action of expelling GI contents via mouth (usually an involuntary reflex) Causes of nausea ​and vomiting in palliative patients Cancer…

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Osmotic Diuretics

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Osmotic diuretics e.g. mannitol These are basically just drugs that are filtered at the glomerulus and then not reabsorbed along the nephron, thus resulting in a greater osmotic pressure within…

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