Res Social Adm Pharm. 2021 Jul 2:S1551-7411(21)00240-0. doi: 10.1016/j.sapharm.2021.06.023. Online ahead of print.
BACKGROUND: Polipharmacy has been identified as a contributing factor to the high hospital readmission rates of heart failure (HF) patients. Nevertheless, there limited evidence on pharmacist-led intervention on the reduction of inappropriate medication use in patients.
OBJECTIVE: To summarize the available evidence resulting from interventions, led by pharmacists (alone or as part of a professional team), aimed at reducing inappropriate medications in patients with heart failure.
METHODS: A systematic review was conducted using MEDLINE through PubMed, Embase, the Cochrane Library and Scopus until June 2020. We reviewed both randomized controlled trials and non-randomized intervention studies.The quality of evidence was assessed in accordance with the modified Cochrane Collaboration tool to assess risk of bias for randomized controlled trials. The search and extraction process followed PRISMA guidelines.
RESULTS: Of the 4367 records screening, 9 studies were included in the analysis. In 4 (44.4%) studies, the intervention was carried out by a pharmacist working together with a physician; in 4 (44.4%) the intervention was carried out by a pharmacist alone, and in 1 study, the pharmacist collaborated with a nurse. Only 5 (55.5%) studies described the utilization of guidelines or recommendations to carry out the deprescription, and 3 of these showed improved clinical outcomes in the interventional group compared to the control group. The other studies (4, 44.4%) did not follow a specific guideline or recommendation to evaluate the appropriateness of medication, and none of them showed statistically significant differences in clinical outcomes between interventional and control groups.
CONCLUSION: Only those studies where pharmacists evaluated the appropriateness of treatment to specific HF guidelines showed significant differences in patients' clinical outcomes. The development and validation of a specific tool to evaluate medication appropriateness in patients with HF, could contribute to the improvement of patient health.