Pharmacotherapy is the study of drug use from a clinical perspective.
Unlike pharmacology, where one studies drugs and their mechanism of action, one gets a clinical picture of how a drug is used.
Being assigned to teach clinical pharmacy and therapeutics subjects, I was in search of suitable books to refer to.
I came across a few books by Roger Walker,etc. But they were either not extensive or concise to read.
Then I was suggested to refer to Dipiro Pharmacotherapy, a pathophysiologic approach.
I went to the library and found it to be a very big and fat book. The pages were smooth and thin.
Then I went through the topic of heart failure. And my view of disease and its management got completely changed.
It was so easy to read and the topic was covered to the complete extent without any points missed.
After such a long experience with teaching using the book, I would recommend anyone to go for it. It is just like a bible for pharmacotherapy, without which the subject of pharmacotherapy will be incomplete.
Dipiro Pharmacotherapy a pathophysiologic approach review
The book covers any topic in the following format.
- The title or chapter name.
- Bullet points
- Then an introduction to the disease
- Signs & Symptoms.
- Treatment as
- Non-Pharmacological, if any, and then
- Management in a different set of patients.
- Complications and controversies of treatment.
If you notice the pattern of the approach above, it is clear that this book covers every aspect of pharmacotherapy.
The title or chapter names are clear-cut and precise. They give an idea of what the internal content could be.
For example, they do not just mention liver disorders.
Instead, they have chapters like liver cirrhosis, hepatitis, etc.
This is because each topic is dealt with separately and thoroughly.
Bullet points: These are a set of points regarding the whole topic under the title. These points include every aspect in concise and short form. This might help us in times of exam revision as one need not go into a detailed chapter for a recap of it. These points include symptoms, cause, types of disease conditions, treatment options, etc.
Introduction: In most books introduction gives an idea of disease in few lines. But this book deals a bit more. It gives an idea of the percentage of population affected by the disease in the world, the age group specifically susceptible and also the chance of male and female gender variance in terms of disease susceptibility. For example, schizophrenia is said to affect men in their early twenties, while for women, it is in their early thirties.
Etiology: The etiology is given in possible details so as to have a better idea during clinical observations. It covers aspects like lifestyle habits, genetic probability, diet, infections, drug-induced and other possibilities. It also mentions the types and differences in the cause and features of the disease.
Pathophysiology: This part of the topic gives an idea of possible changes in the anatomy of the organ affected. The presence of any foreign agents, the possible changes in the biochemistry of the system involved are mentioned. This helps one learn where the actual problem is and how to correct it.
Signs & Symptoms: The physical and mental signs and symptoms during a disease condition are mentioned quite clearly. Besides the signs related to the disorder, any other possible signs due to the disease in the body are also mentioned.
Diagnosis: Diagnosis of disease from a clinical perspective is mentioned. This starts from external physical signs to internal pathological changes. It mentions various methods used for proper diagnosis and ascertainment of condition in the patient.
Treatment: This section of the chapter is quite exhaustive in this book. It includes all the possible means like non-pharmacological means and also pharmacological means.
It gives equal weight for both non-pharmacological and pharmacological means of the disease.
Under pharmacological means, it gives the types of medications available, the treatment schedule, dose, dosing schedules and also option to change with progress in the disease conditions.
One can have a clear-cut idea of how drugs are going to be used as the disease conditions progress in the patient. IF the disease subsides, it also mentions the steps taken to prevent recurrence and remittance.
Management of different sets of patients: This is the key takeaway from this book in comparison to other books. The different age group of patients requires a different set of care and precaution with regards to drug administration. This book deals with this aspect in every disease condition.
It throws light on how to deal with geriatric patients (old age), pregnant women and also babies and infants.
For a medical practitioner, student and even pharmacists, this helps to understand how to use medicines in these kinds of patients with care.
Complications and controversies of treatment: Every treatment and medicine we use have a possibility of complications and controversies. Complications can be side effects or other damages to the body. While controversies include that the disease does not subside by particular treatment instead, it may aggravate.
This book of dipiro clearly deals with the various aspects of pharmacotherapy.