Potential drug-drug interactions in cardiothoracic intensive care unit of a pulmonary teaching hospital

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Little is known about clinically significant drug-drug interactions (DDIs) in respiratory settings. DDIs are more likely to occur in critically ill patients due to complex pharmacotherapy regimens and organ dysfunctions. The aim of this study was to identify the pattern of potential DDIs (pDDIs) occurring in cardiothoracic intensive care unit (ICU) of a pulmonary hospital. A prospective observational study was conducted for 6 months. All pDDIs for admitted patients in cardiothoracic ICU were identified with Lexi-Interact program and assessed by a clinical pharmacologist. The interacting drugs, reliability, mechanisms, potential outcomes, and clinical management were evaluated for severe and contraindicated interactions. The study included 195 patients. Lung cancer (14.9%) was the most common diagnosis followed by tracheal stenosis (14.3%). The rate of pDDIs was 720.5/100 patients. Interactions were more commonly observed in transplant patients. 17.7% of pDDIs were considered as severe and contraindicated interactions. Metabolism (54.8%) and additive (24.2%) interactions were the most frequent mechanisms leading to pDDIs, and azole antifungals and fluoroquinolones were the main drug classes involved. The pattern of pDDIs in cardiothoracic ICU differs from other ICU settings. Specialized epidemiological knowledge of drug interactions may help clinical practitioners to reduce the risk of adverse drug events.

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