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Cadernos de Saúde Pública

On-line version ISSN 1678-4464Print version ISSN 0102-311X


RISSATO, Maria de Almeida Rocha; ROMANO-LIEBER, Nicolina Silvana  and  LIEBER, Renato Rocha. Terminology for drug incidents in the hospital context. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2008, vol.24, n.9, pp.1965-1975. ISSN 1678-4464.

In-hospital drug incidents cause problems for patients and additional costs for the health system. The variety of terms used to report them leads to disparities in research results and confuses the professionals that report them. This study aimed to review the terms used to describe drug incidents by collating them with the official concepts and definitions. PubMed, MEDLINE, IPA, and LILACS were searched to select studies published from January 1990 to December 2005. Thirty-three publications were selected. The supranational terminology recommended for describing drug incidents proved insufficient, but there was consensus that the expressions are used as a function of the type of incident. Adverse drug reaction is used when no intent is identified. Adverse drug event mainly describes incidents during hospitalization, and drug-related problem is used in studies on pharmaceutical care (use or lack of the drug). Still, the division between these categories is neither clear nor simple. Future studies on the relations between categories and multidisciplinary research on human error could support proposals for new concepts.

Keywords : Medication Errors; Pharmaceutical Preparations; Drugs Relations.

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