Full content PDFs

Deprescribing – a valuable practice?
Whatever the reasons behind inappropriate polypharmacy in the older population, there is a consensus that regular medication reviews in this demographic are essential. But these are time consuming, and careful, monitored deprescribing is not an easy or straightforward process. At a time when GPs are under impossible pressure, a click of the mouse to repeat a prescription may be the most tempting option.
Rob Munro 

Next generation immunology: the quest for a universal vaccine
(click here for full web article) 

Until recently, vaccine development involved isolating, inactivating and injecting the pathogen or part of the micro-organism. However, newer approaches such as reverse vaccinology are facilitating the synthesis of novel vaccine antigens, and may offer hope for a ‘universal vaccine’ in the future.
Mark Greener

ESPAUR 2016: antibiotic and antifungal prescribing in England
The English Surveillance Programme for Antimicrobial Utilisation and Resistance (ESPAUR) was set up by Public Health England in 2013 in response to the government’s five-year antimicrobial resistance strategy in order to monitor antimicrobial use, resistance and stewardship across England. The key findings of their 2016 report show that some progress is being made, especially in primary care.
Steve Chaplin 

Current management of pulmonary arterial hypertension
The management of pulmonary arterial hypertension has been transformed by the introduction of disease-targeted therapies. This article examines the diagnosis of pulmonary arterial hypertension, the efficacy of current treatments, and the role of the GP in management.
Clare Ricketts and Colin Church

NICE Evidence Search: an answer to information overload?
In the second article in our series on NICE guidance, we discuss NICE’s online Evidence Search service: how the evidence is sourced, what it includes and how to use it.
Joy Ogden

The treatment of URTIs and otitis media in children
(click here for full web article)
Despite the majority of infections being viral and self-limiting, children are still frequently prescribed antibiotics for upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs) and acute otitis media. This article discusses how to assess whether an antibiotic is appropriate and when referral to secondary care may be necessary.
Faye Chappell

Pharmacokinetics: optimising safe and effective prescribing
This article goes back to basics with an update on pharmacokinetics, examining how underlying processes in the body influence the clinical effects and risk of side-effects of drugs that GPs commonly prescribe.
Susan Mayor

Legal implications of deprescribing: a case scenario
(click here for full web article)
Prescribers are increasingly being encouraged to deprescribe unnecessary medication, but a potential barrier is the worry of litigation. This article presents an illustrative case scenario that examines the legal implications of deprescribing.
Nina Barnett and Òrla Kelly 

Reslizumab: add-on therapy for severe eosinophilic asthma
Resilzumab (Cinqaero) is a new add-on therapy for severe inadequately controlled eosinophilic asthma, which is administered by monthly IV infusion. This article summarises its indications, efficacy and adverse effects.
Steve Chaplin

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