Drug-herb interactions added to eMIMS
MIMS is offering a trial of a new complementary versus mainstream drug interactions module to subscribers of its eMIMS service.
The information has been sourced from fully referenced, evidence-based data collected by professors Basil Roufogalis and Andrew McLachlan of the Herbal Medicines Research and Education Centre, part of the University of Sydney's Faculty of Pharmacy.
The database delivers over 500 interaction modules to the integrative medicines website IMgateway, run by UnityHealth.
According to MIMS, surveys by NPS have found that safety and interactions between herbal medicines and prescription drugs are amongst the information most required by health professionals.
The module can be accessed through the essential resources tab in eMIMS, and then by selecting MIMS Drug Interactions. It allows users to select complementary and mainstream medications from a list to analyse their interactions.
Any adverse drug interactions come with references to published studies, along with advice for the patient and general commentary.
For example, a search for interactions between the antidepressant amitriptyline and the popular herbal remedy St John's wort (Hypericum perforatum) will reference a 2002 study that found co-administration of St John's wort can reduce the effectiveness of the prescription drug. It advises doctors to tell patients to avoid this combination.
MIMS business development manager Margaret Gehrig said that as eMIMS is so widely used, it has been chosen as the first MIMS product to carry the module.
“The IMgateway database within eMIMS will enable general practitioners, pharmacists and other health professionals to retrieve evidence-based information on clinically significant drug and herb interactions,” Ms Gehrig said.
“Subscribers can search a complementary medicine against a prescription medicine (or vice versa), quickly obtain a recommendation on whether the combination should be avoided, or be alerted if caution is required.”
MIMS is offering users a free three-month trial of the module to eMIMS users, available in the August CD. It is expected that the service will be added to other MIMS digital products in the future.
Posted in Australian eHealth