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Pharmacist-led interventions may help prevent cardiovascular disease

November 28, 2019

With their expertise in the safe and effective use of medications, pharmacists can help in the management of chronic diseases. A review and analysis published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology indicates that initiatives--such as patient education, medication review, and physical assessments--led by pharmacists can make important contributions to the prevention of cardiovascular disease.

To assess the potential of pharmacists to help prevent cardiovascular diseases in general practice, Abdullah Alshehri, of the University of Birmingham, in the UK, and his colleagues searched the medical literature for relevant randomised controlled clinical trials.

The team identified 21 trials with a total of 8,933 patients. Pharmacist-led interventions included patient education, medication review and counselling, physical assessment, assessing adherence, lifestyle modification, and medication management (such as prescribing, adjusting, monitoring, and administering therapy, and identifying drug-related problems). The most frequently used pharmacist-led interventions were medication review and medication management.

Patients receiving pharmacist-led interventions experienced significant reductions in their systolic blood pressure (by an average of -9.33 mmHg); Hemoglobin A1c, a measure of blood sugar levels (by an average of -0.76%); and LDL-cholesterol (by an average of -15.19 mg/dl). Pharmacist-led interventions also helped patients correctly follow their prescribed medication regimens.

"The evidence presented in this review provides an important message to health systems and policy makers regarding the effectiveness of general practice-based pharmacists' interventions," said Alshehri. "The significant reductions in blood pressure, blood glucose, and blood cholesterol reported in this meta-analysis, if sustained in clinical practice, could have significant implications for managing hypertension, diabetes and dyslipidaemia that could prevent cardiovascular morbidity and mortality."

Alshehri noted that the findings support a greater involvement of pharmacists in general practice. "This will benefit health organisations by providing cost-effective care associated with greater control of patients' conditions and their medications," he said.
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Full citation: "Impact of the Pharmacist-Led Intervention on the Control of Medical Cardiovascular Risk Factors for the Primary Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease in General Practice: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials." Abdullah Alshehri, Zahraa Jalal, Ejaz Cheema, M Haque, Duncan Jenkins, and Asma Yahyouche. British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology. Published Online: November 28, 2019, DOI: 10.1111/bcp.14164

URL Upon Publication:http://doi.wiley.com/10.1111/bcp.14164

Author Contact: To arrange an interview with the author, please contact Emma McKinney, Media Relations & Communications Manager in the University of Birmingham Press Office, at e.j.mckinney@bham.ac.uk or +44 0121 414 6681.

About the Journal

The British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology has the primary goal of publishing high quality research papers on all aspects of drug action in humans. The journal has a wide readership, bridging the medical profession, clinical research and the pharmaceutical industry, and is published monthly. It is owned by the British Pharmacological Society and published by Wiley. The journal's current Impact Factor is 3.493 (Thomson Reuters Science Citation Index).

About the British Pharmacological Society

The British Pharmacological Society is a charity with a mission to promote and advance the whole spectrum of pharmacology. Founded in 1931, it is now a global community at the heart of pharmacology, with over 3,500 members from more than 60 countries worldwide. The Society leads the way in the research and application of pharmacology around the world through its scientific meetings, educational resources and peer-reviewed journals: the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, Pharmacology Research & Perspectives, and the British Journal of Pharmacology, which includes the Concise Guide to PHARMACOLOGY, featuring open access overviews of the key properties of over 1,700 human therapeutic targets and their drugs, and links to http://www.guidetopharmacology.org.

Press Office: T. +44 (0) 207 239 0180 E. harriet.myles@bps.ac.uk

About Wiley

Wiley drives the world forward with research and education. Through publishing, platforms and services, we help students, researchers, universities, and corporations to achieve their goals in an ever-changing world. For more than 200 years, we have delivered consistent performance to all of our stakeholders. The Company's website can be accessed at http://www.wiley.com.

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