Strategic For Studying Pharmacology

1. Concentrate on therapeutic classifications and their prototypes. 
For example, morphine is the prototype of opioid analgesics. Understanding morphine makes learning about other opioid analgesics easier because they are compared with morphine.

2. Compare a newly encountered drug with a prototype when possible. 
Relating the unknown to the known aids learning and retention of knowledge.

3. Try to understand how the drug acts in the body. This allows you to predict therapeutic effects and to predict, prevent, or minimize adverse effects by early detection and treatment.

4. Concentrate your study efforts on major characteristics.
These include the main indications for use, common and potentially serious adverse effects, conditions
in which the drug is contraindicated or must be used cautiously, and related nursing care needs.

5. Keep an authoritative, up-to-date drug reference readily available, preferably at work and home. 
This is a much more reliable source of drug information than memory, especially for dosage ranges. Use the reference freely whenever you encounter an unfamiliar drug or when a question arises about a familiar one.

6. Use your own words when taking notes or writing drug information cards. 
Also, write notes, answers to review questions, definitions of new terms, and trade names of drugs encountered in clinical practice settings directly into your pharmacology textbook. The mental processing
required for these activities helps in both initial learning and later retention of knowledge.

7. Mentally rehearse applying drug knowledge in nursing care by asking yourself, 
“What if I have a client who is receiving this drug? What must I do to safely administer the drug? For what must I assess the client before giving the drug and for what must I observe the client after drug administration? What if my client is an elderly person or a child?”

source: clinical drug therapy


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