In October 2017, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence published guidance to support health and social care professionals in recognising and responding to abuse and neglect in young people aged under 18 years. Pharmacists and pharmacy teams should be aware of their roles and responsibilities as outlined in this guidance.
Aphasia is a communication disability, most often caused by stroke, which occurs when the language centres of the brain are damaged. Pharmacists and healthcare professionals should be aware of how the communication needs of people with aphasia vary based on the severity of the condition, and how they can best provide support with medicines optimisation.
Advising denture wearers in community pharmacySubscription
Community pharmacy is ideally placed to provide first-line advice and support for patients experiencing issues with their dentures. Pharmacists and healthcare professionals should be aware of the common problems patients encounter and be able to recommend products that may be beneficial to relieve any symptoms they are experiencing.
Treatment options for menopausal symptomsSubscription
Pharmacists and healthcare professionals can provide a patient-centred approach to advising women about the menopause, and provide robust information about the risks and benefits of menopause hormone treatment that will allow patients to make an informed choice about how to relieve their symptoms.
Smoking cessation services: how nicotine replacement therapy and counselling through pharmacy can support adherence and quittingSubscription
Smoking is the primary cause of preventable ill health and death in the UK. Pharmacists and pharmacy teams are well placed to provide stop-smoking services, which are cost-effective interventions to help people give up smoking.
Although some patients may experience some symptoms of dry eye only occasionally, dry eye disease is a chronic condition, so it is important for patients to understand the implications.
People who wear lenses are at risk of dry eyes. Pharmacists should give specific advice to lens wearers when recommending over-the-counter products because some cannot be used with lenses.
In order to get the most from eye treatments, it is important to apply them effectively and store them correctly.
Pharmacists should advise patients to maintain good lid hygiene to manage blepharitis. Antibiotic drops or ointments, or low-dose antibiotic courses should be considered if hygiene changes are ineffective.
Many over-the-counter products for dry eye disease contain preservatives. These can help make products last longer once opened and mean products can be available in multi-dose packaging.
Specialist intervention may be required for patients who have severe dry eye disease, or if the condition does not respond to artificial tears or other treatment.
Highlights of CPD and learning in 2017Subscription
Try our quiz, with questions taken from this year’s learning and CPD articles, and check your knowledge of subjects ranging from sepsis and skin cancer to coeliac disease.
Over-the-counter treatments for dry eye disease are available in several different formulations including drops, gels, creams, ointments and sprays. Some of these formulations are known as ‘artificial tears’.
If a patient enters the pharmacy with eye symptoms, there are several questions pharmacy staff can ask to help find out whether their symptoms may be related to dry eye disease.
Computer vision syndrome is a group of eye and vision-related problems that result from prolonged computer, tablet, e-reader and mobile phone use. Patients may present to pharmacies complaining of eye discomfort and vision problems, so pharmacists and pharmacy teams should be able to distinguish the factors involved for particular patients
July 2017 saw publication of the fourth edition of ‘Drug misuse and dependence: UK guidelines on clinical management’, also known as the Orange Book, which provides guidance that supports healthcare professionals in the field of dependence on illicit and licit medicines. Pharmacists and pharmacy teams should be aware of this online-only update and what the changes mean for practice.
Community pharmacists are uniquely placed to deliver hepatitis C virus testing and treatment, and could help efforts in reaching the World Health Organization target for elimination of the disease by 2030.
Although children take responsibility for taking their medications at different ages, involving parents, and where possible children, in decision making is key to medicines optimisation.
How to diagnose and manage Trichomonas vaginalisSubscription
Trichomonas vaginalis, also known as trichomoniasis, is a curable sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by a parasite, Trichomonas vaginalis. The majority of infected individuals are asymptomatic or have non-specific symptoms, making diagnosis difficult. Therefore, appropriate treatment and prevention strategies are important to prevent its spread.
Understand how to advise on chronic-open angle glaucoma, a condition in which intraocular pressure can permanently damage the optic nerve and nerve fibre, leading to blindness if left untreated.
July 2017 saw publication of the Tear Film and Ocular Surface Society International Dry Eye Workshop report, an update to the 2007 report that became the reference for clinicians, researchers and industry on dry eye. Pharmacy is a frequent point of for patients with a dry eye condition. Pharmacists and pharmacy teams should therefore be aware of its changing definiton, causes, diagnosis and management.
Each person’s experience of mild cognitive impairment and dementia will be quite different. Pharmacists and pharmacy teams are well placed to assist in both the early identification of dementia, as well as to help patients manage their medicines.
More than two million people are affected by sight loss across the UK, which may impact on their ability to use and take their medicines correctly and safely. Here, the Royal National Institute of Blind People, Medicines Use and Safety team and Moorfields Eye Hospital provide advice and recommendations for pharmacy to provide appropriate support for people with sight loss.
Patients of all ages visit their pharmacy to seek advice on a variety of conditions affecting their feet, but some groups, including the young and active, people with diabetes and elderly patients, are at higher risk of developing common foot conditions. Produced in partnership with RB.
Around 500,000 print copies of the BNF and BNF for Children are distributed to healthcare professionals each year. A new app which combines BNF and BNF for Children content ensures the availability of drug information through a smart device.
Children may be exposed to potentially harmful excipients, essential components of drug formulations, through unlicensed and off-label use of adult medicines. Excipient exposure should be minimised, although a medicine containing a problem excipient may be indicated, but only after a careful risk–benefit assessment.
Melanoma is the fifth most common cancer in the UK, accounting for 4% of all new cancer diagnoses. Pharmacists and healthcare professionals are ideally placed to offer advice to patients on the use of sunscreens to limit UV exposure, reducing their risk of developing melanoma.
Rashes in childrenSubscription
Rashes in children are common and may be difficult to differentiate by appearance alone, therefore, it is important to consider the entire clinical presentation in order to make the appropriate diagnosis.
Pertussis (whooping cough) is a highly contagious, acute bacterial infection. It can affect people of all ages, but is especially dangerous in vulnerable groups, such as unimmunised infants.
Anticipatory prescribing enables patients in the last days and weeks of their lives to have their symptoms managed at home. Pharmacists are ideally positioned to provide practical support and advice to other healthcare professionals on the prescribing and administration of anticipatory medicines and to facilitate timely supply.