Good Evening! For the first time in awhile, I am sitting here in my Chicago apartment with the windows closed and space heater on as it seems Fall has finally arrived. The colder weather also presents an opportunity to take advantage of some ASHP re-certification materials for BCPS. This month, I completed the hepatology module of the 2015 Literature Study Review Course. This module included the AASLD/IDSA Recommendations for Testing, Managing, and Treating Hepatitis C Guidelines as well as two NEJM articles:
Kowdley, et al. Ledipasvir and sofosbuvir for 8 or 12 weeks for chronic HCV without cirrhosis. NEJM. 2014;370:1879-88.
Zeuzam, et al. Sofosbuvir and ribavirin in HCV genotypes 2 and 3. NEJM. 2014;370:1993-2001.
Despite having recently completed a PGY-2 ID residency, I find that I am not very comfortable with the management of HCV and the therapies that are used. I think the main reason for this is because treatment strategies are changing so quickly. While most guidelines are updated every 5-10 years, the HCV guidelines have been updated multiple times each year. This makes it intimating trying to stay up-to-date on the current literature. However, as a new pharmacist and one with an interest in infectious diseases, I took the plunge and explored this hepatology module. If anyone else has read the guidelines, you will know that they are extensive, rather complicated, and challenging to navigate. Since they are constantly being changed by new literature, there really isn't any point in memorizing them in their current state. More importantly, I developed an appreciation for how the document is outlined and a process for finding the information I needed. I think this is an important skill for all pharmacists to learn in order to provide updated information to our clinicians. I enjoyed reading the two journal articles, and appreciated that the three most common HCV genotypes (1, 2, and 3) were addressed. I think their results (which hadn't been incorporated into the guidelines) will have an impact on the management of HCV in the future.
While I may not use the information I learned on a daily basis in my clinical practice, I am sure I will increasingly see patients admitted to the hospital on these medications. As such, I now have a better understanding for the management of the disease and where I can look for additional information if questions arise.
Thanks for reading, and take some time this fall to complete a CE course for yourself!#Accreditation #ASHPCerts #ContinuingEducation #AmbulatoryCare #Ambassador #BCPS