Research Roundup

Debbie Rigby rounds up the latest in research news 

Omega-3 fatty acids for the primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease

A Cochrane systematic review of 79 RCTs (n=112,059) of 12 to 72 months duration has concluded that increasing EPA and DHA has little or no effect on mortality or cardiovascular health. Low-quality evidence suggests ALA may slightly reduce CVD event risk, CHD mortality and arrhythmia, but makes little or no difference to all-cause or cardiovascular deaths or coronary events.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2018, Issue 7.


Reducing the anticholinergic and sedative load in older patients on polypharmacy by pharmacist-led medication review

A pharmacist-led medication review was not effective at reducing the anticholinergic/sedative load, as measured by the Drug Burden Index (DBI) in this randomised controlled single blind trial, conducted through 15 community pharmacies in Netherlands. Patients included in the trial were aged ≥65 years (mean age 75.7 years) who used ≥5 medicines for ≥3 months, including at least one psycholeptic/psychoanaleptic medication. The authors highlighted that 3-month follow-up might have been too short to detect full effects of medication review.

BMJ Open 2018;8:e019042.


Analytical quality and effectiveness of point-of-care testing in community pharmacies

A systematic literature review has concluded Community pharmacies are well suited to deliver a wide range of point-of-care tests. Point-of-care tests in 11 studies included blood glucose, cholesterol, creatinine, uric acid, liver enzymes, international normalized ratio for anticoagulation therapy, bone mineral density for osteoporosis, forced expiratory volume for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and infection with human immunodeficiency virus. Interventions applying these tests were effective overall.

Research in Social and Administrative Pharmacy, available online 20 July 2018.


Community pharmacist‐led interventions and their impact on patients’ medication adherence and other health outcomes

A systematic review of 22 studies has concluded that community pharmacist‐led interventions have been shown to improve patients’ adherence and contribute to better blood pressure control, cholesterol management, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma control. Studies in this review, however, did not report statistically significant effects of interventions on diabetes or depression control.

International Journal of Pharmacy Practice, first published 21 June 2018.


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1 Comment

  1. Daniel Hackett

    What exactly are community pharmacist‐led interventions? The goal seems to be to get everyone to follow orders, take whatever drugs they are given, don’t ask questions or think for yourself, and cede complete control of your own health to “experts”, i.e., people who make money from it. What a nightmare scenario.

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