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Int J Clin Pharm. 2016 Feb;38(1):171-82. doi: 10.1007/s11096-015-0228-7. Epub 2015 Dec 7.

Chronotherapy in practice: the perspective of the community pharmacist.

Author information

1
Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Sydney, Room S114, Pharmacy and Bank Building A15, Science Road, Camperdown, NSW, 2006, Australia. gaga8947@uni.sydney.edu.au.
2
Woolcock Institute of Medical Research, University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW, Australia. gaga8947@uni.sydney.edu.au.
3
Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Sydney, Room S114, Pharmacy and Bank Building A15, Science Road, Camperdown, NSW, 2006, Australia.
4
Woolcock Institute of Medical Research, University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW, Australia.
5
Department of Respiratory & Sleep Medicine, Royal North Shore Hospital, Sydney, NSW, Australia.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Optimising the time of drug administration in alignment with circadian rhythms to enhance the clinical effect or minimise/avoid adverse effects is referred to as chronotherapy. Pharmacists have a key role in providing medicine related information, including counselling about the optimal time for medication administration. Where applicable, the principles of chronotherapy should underlie this aspect of medication counselling. Despite significant developments in the science of chronotherapy for specific pharmacological treatments, the perspective of pharmacists about their understanding and application of these principles in practice has not been explored.

OBJECTIVE:

To explore community pharmacist's viewpoints about and experience with the application of chronotherapy principles in practice.

SETTING:

Community pharmacies within metropolitan Sydney in New South Wales, Australia.

METHODS:

Semi-structured, face to face interviews with a convenience sample of community pharmacists were conducted. All interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim and thematically analyzed using a 'grounded theory' approach, given the novelty of this area. Main outcome measure Community pharmacists' awareness, current practice and future practice support requirements about the principles of chronotherapy.

RESULTS:

Twenty-five semi-structured interviews were conducted. Most participants reported encountering cases where clinical decision making about suggesting appropriate times of drug administration to patients was needed. Their approach was mainly pragmatic rather than based on theoretical principles of circadian variation in drug disposition or on current or emerging evidence; thus there was an evidence practice chasm in some cases. However, most participants believed they have an important role to play in counselling patients about optimal administration times and were willing to enact such roles or acquire skills/competence in this area.

CONCLUSION:

Community pharmacists contribute to the safe and effective use of medications in providing the patients with information on optimal timing of drug administration during counselling. Further education, practical training and access to information may help pharmacists in translating principles of chronotherapy into the practice.

KEYWORDS:

Australia; Chronotherapy; Circadian rhythms; Community pharmacist; Timing of drug administration

PMID:
26644017
DOI:
10.1007/s11096-015-0228-7
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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