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Ann Oncol. 2011 Oct;22(10):2334-41. doi: 10.1093/annonc/mdq761. Epub 2011 Feb 22.

Potential drug interactions in cancer therapy: a prevalence study using an advanced screening method.

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1
Department of Clinical Pharmacology and Pharmacy, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

In cancer patients, drug interactions may intensify adverse events or reduce antitumour effects. We assessed the prevalence of potential drug interactions (PDIs) among ambulatory cancer patients on i.v. treatment using an advanced screening method.

PATIENTS AND METHODS:

Data on drugs used for comorbidities, anticancer agents, over-the-counter (OTC) drugs, and comorbidities were collected by means of a structured interview among the patients and review of medical charts. PDIs were identified using electronic (Drug Interaction Facts software, version 4.0) and manual screening methods (peer-reviewed reports).

RESULTS:

In this study, 278 patients were enrolled. We identified 348 PDIs. Of all patients, 161 (58%) had at least one PDI. Of all PDIs, 34% was classified as major and 60% as moderate. Coumarins, quinolones, antiepileptics, and hydrochlorothiazide were frequently part of a PDI. Interactions that potentially cause QT interval prolongation, gastrointestinal toxicity, and central nervous system depression were also common. In multivariate analysis, an increasing number of drugs [odds ratio (OR) = 1.4, confidence interval (CI) 1.23-1.52; P < 0.001] and the use of an OTC drug (OR = 0.56, CI 0.32-0.97; P = 0.045) were risk factors.

CONCLUSIONS:

PDIs are common in patients treated for an (haemato-) oncological disease. Screening for potential interactions should take place routinely before administering chemotherapy.

PMID:
21343376
DOI:
10.1093/annonc/mdq761
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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