Journal Article

Contraindicated medication use in dialysis patients undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention.

Tsai TT, Maddox TM, Roe MT, et al. JAMA. 2009;302:2458-64.

Patients hospitalized for cardiac problems are vulnerable to experiencing medication errors, as they are commonly prescribed high-risk medications such as anticoagulants and antiplatelet agents. This analysis of more than 22,000 hemodialysis patients undergoing percutaneous coronary interventions (PCI) (for example, angioplasty) found that 22.3% were administered either enoxaparin or eptifibatide, medications that are contraindicated in dialysis patients due to excessive bleeding risk. This risk was borne out in the study, as patients who received the contraindicated medications did in fact have more major bleeding episodes. The high prevalence of serious medication errors in this study argues for education and use of forcing functions to prevent misuse of these medications.