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Impact of pharmacist interventions on drug-related problems and laboratory markers in outpatients with human immunodeficiency virus infection

Authors Molino C, Cavalcanti Carnevale R, Rodrigues A, Visacri M, Moriel P, Mazzola P

Received 4 February 2014

Accepted for publication 5 April 2014

Published 7 August 2014 Volume 2014:10 Pages 631—639

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/TCRM.S61821

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Caroline de Godoi Rezende Costa Molino, Renata Cavalcanti Carnevale, Aline Teotonio Rodrigues, Marília Berlofa Visacri, Patricia Moriel, Priscila Gava Mazzola

Department of Clinical Pathology, Faculty of Medical Sciences (FCM), University of Campinas (UNICAMP), São Paulo, Brazil

Background: Substantial complexity has been introduced into treatment regimens for patients with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. Many drug-related problems (DRPs) are detected in these patients, such as low adherence, therapeutic inefficacy, and safety issues. We evaluated the impact of pharmacist interventions on CD4+ T-lymphocyte count, HIV viral load, and DRPs in patients with HIV infection.
Methods: In this 18-month prospective controlled study, 90 outpatients were selected by convenience sampling from the Hospital Dia–University of Campinas Teaching Hospital (Brazil). Forty-five patients comprised the pharmacist intervention group and 45 the control group; all patients had HIV infection with or without acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. Pharmaceutical appointments were conducted based on the Pharmacotherapy Workup method, although DRPs and pharmacist intervention classifications were modified for applicability to institutional service limitations and research requirements. Pharmacist interventions were performed immediately after detection of DRPs. The main outcome measures were DRPs, CD4+ T-lymphocyte count, and HIV viral load.
Results: After pharmacist intervention, DRPs decreased from 5.2 (95% confidence interval [CI] =4.1–6.2) to 4.2 (95% CI =3.3–5.1) per patient (P=0.043). A total of 122 pharmacist interventions were proposed, with an average of 2.7 interventions per patient. All the pharmacist interventions were accepted by physicians, and among patients, the interventions were well accepted during the appointments, but compliance with the interventions was not measured. A statistically significant increase in CD4+ T-lymphocyte count in the intervention group was found (260.7 cells/mm3 [95% CI =175.8–345.6] to 312.0 cells/mm3 [95% CI =23.5–40.6], P=0.015), which was not observed in the control group. There was no statistical difference between the groups regarding HIV viral load.
Conclusion: This study suggests that pharmacist interventions in patients with HIV infection can cause an increase in CD4+ T-lymphocyte counts and a decrease in DRPs, demonstrating the importance of an optimal pharmaceutical care plan.

Keywords: pharmaceutical care, HIV, clinical pharmacy, CD4+ T lymphocyte count, AIDS, pharmacy service

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