Journal of Biomedical Informatics
Patients on multiple medications are at increased risk for adverse drug events. While physicians can reduce this risk by regularly reviewing the side-effect profiles of their patients’ medications, this process can be time-consuming. We created a decision support system designed to expedite reviewing potential adverse reactions through information visualization. The system includes a database containing 16,340 unique drug and side-effect pairs, representing 250 common medications. A numeric score is assigned to each pair reflecting the strength of association between drug and effect. Based on these scores, the system generates graphical adverse reaction maps for any user-selected combination of drugs. A study comparing speed and accuracy of retrieving side-effect data using this tool versus UpToDate demonstrated a 60% reduction in time to complete a query (61 s vs. 155 s, p < 0.0001) with no decrease in accuracy. These findings suggest that information visualization can significantly expedite review of potential adverse drug events. – J Biomed Inform. 2010 Apr;43(2):326-3
The visual support tool mentioned in the abstract above is called Rxplore and was developed by Jon D. Duke, M.D., a medical informatics fellow at the Regenstrief Institute and the Indiana University School of Medicine.
Rxplore is an application designed to give healthcare providers a graphical representation of the top 10 side effects associated with a particular medication. In addition the user can chose to view only side effects related to a particular specialty such as gastroenterology, although I’m not sure I see the wisdom in doing something like that.
This is could be a great tool for physicians and pharmacists alike. Not only does it look like a neat toy, but it could be used as a simple way to explain potential side effects to patients; you know, the whole â€œpicture is worth a thousands wordsâ€ thing. I would love the opportunity to play with Rxplore and have requested an opportunity to help the makers beta test it. I’ll let you know how that goes.
Thereâ€™s a nice video of Rxplore in action at www.Rxplore.com/AMIA.
The press release can be found here.
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