Original Article

Awareness and Knowledge Among Internal Medicine Resident Trainees for Dose Adjustment of Analgesics and Neuropsychotropic Medications in CKD

Authors: Chadi Y. Saad, MD, Joshua Fogel, PhD, Sofia Rubinstein, MD


Objectives: Errors in drug dosing lead to poor patient outcomes and are common in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). Because the majority of patients with CKD are being treated by physicians specializing in internal medicine, we studied the awareness and knowledge that internal medicine resident trainees (IMRTs) have regarding the correct dosage of commonly used analgesic and neuropsychotropic medications for patients with CKD.

Methods: We surveyed 353 IMRTs about their awareness of whether a medication needs dose adjustment in patients with CKD and knowledge for medication adjustment by level of glomerular filtration rate.

Results: There were high percentages for lack of awareness and knowledge. For analgesics, this lack of awareness/knowledge was highest for acetaminophen (awareness 83.0%, knowledge 90.9%). For neuropsychotropics, this was highest for paroxetine (awareness 74.5%, knowledge 91.5%). Analyses for postgraduate year (PGY) -1 trainees and PGY-2 trainees for analgesics showed higher odds for lack of awareness for tramadol (PGY-1 odds ratio [OR] 2.37, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.2–4.62, P < 0.05; PGY-2 OR 2.34, 95% CI 1.16–4.72, P < 0.05) and for lack of knowledge for meperedine (PGY-1 OR 4.01, 95% CI 1.81–8.89, P < 0.05; PGY-2 OR 3.30, 95% CI 1.44–7.59, P < 0.05). Nephrology residency rotation for the neuropsychotropic medication of gabapentin showed lower odds for both lack of awareness (OR 0.56, 95% CI 0.32–0.97, P < 0.05) and knowledge (OR 0.52, 95% CI 0.27–0.997, P < 0.05).

Conclusions: Awareness and knowledge are poor among IMRTs for dose adjustments of analgesics and neuropsychotropic medication classes in patients with CKD. There should be a renewed focus during IMRTs’ residency on additional nephrology exposure and formal didactic educational training to help them better manage complex treatment regimens to prevent medication dosing errors.


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