Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

UC Develops New Approach to Web-Based Drug Withdrawal Warnings

27.09.2006
The University of Cincinnati (UC) has developed a faster approach for informing consumers online when the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) withdraws a medication.

The new approach works with NetWellness.org, a commercial-free, consumer health Web site produced by Ohio's three medical research universities–UC, Case Western Reserve University and Ohio State University.

"Information about drug withdrawals may not reach patients quickly enough to prevent potentially dangerous side effects," explains Peter Embi, MD, lead author on the UC-based study published in the most recent online edition of the Journal of Medical Internet Research. "Given the public's growing use of the Web for health information, it's important that Web-based consumer health content is kept up to date, particularly that involving withdrawal of a potentially harmful medicine.

"However," says Embi, assistant professor of medicine and a researcher at UC's Institute for the Study of Health, "it's been shown that many sites don't update their content for days, or even weeks, following an FDA drug withdrawal.

"Our new approach," he says, "allows just one person to modify affected Web pages in less than an hour and within just hours of an FDA drug withdrawal announcement."

Embi says he hopes this new method will encourage those responsible for other Web sites carrying critical consumer health information to adopt a similar 24-hour response standard to drug withdrawals.

"There's evidence that patients continue to use medications for some time after their withdrawal, which occasionally causes harmful effects," Embi explains, "so it's important to inform the public as quickly as possible."

Before developing the new approach, Embi and his team evaluated NetWellness' previous update process following the FDA's withdrawal of the painkilling, anti-inflammatory drug Vioxx (rofecoxib) on Sept. 30, 2004.

Notified of the Vioxx withdrawal, NetWellness staff searched their site for the drug and related terms. References to Vioxx information were temporarily pulled and evaluated by medical experts. Content was either changed and reposted or permanently removed.

The researchers found that while this original process was ultimately effective, it took nearly three weeks and considerable human input to complete NetWellness content changes after the Vioxx withdrawal.

To improve on this, the research team developed their new approach and then tested it following FDA withdrawal of the anti-inflammatory drug Bextra (valdecoxib) on April 7, 2005. The results were significantly better than with the previous approach, they say. In just 18 hours after the drug recall, all instances of Bextra on NetWellness were updated and active, says Embi.

The new method, initiated by the FDA's automated MedWatch E-List alert and combined with modified technology and people processes, allows updates of all relevant NetWellness pages with minimal manual input and within 24 hours of a drug recall.

Now when the FDA announces a drug withdrawal, the NetWellness team receives an alert by MedWatch E-List and immediately checks the site's database for instances of the drug name, including trade and generic names. Instances are then hyperlinked using an automated find-and-replace function built into the site's content management system.

Simultaneously, pages containing these references receive a hyperlinked warning box indicating the availability of important information about the withdrawn drug.

All hyperlinks point directly to a new NetWellness "warning" page containing information about the FDA alert and to additional links to either the FDA or the drug manufacturer's Web site.

A recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association reports that the majority of Web-based sources, including the popular consumer health site WebMD.com, took several days to update the Bextra drug information. A subscription-based health information Web site for health professionals, PDR.net, took 268 days to update Bextra content.

Embi plans to further automate this new update method and develop similar responses to other types of FDA health warnings relevant to consumers.

Study coauthors included Mark McCuistion, Charles Kishman, Doris Haag and Steven Marine, all from UC, and Prasad Acharya, from Wright State University.

Jill Hafner | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.uc.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht 'Living bandages': NUST MISIS scientists develop biocompatible anti-burn nanofibers
16.02.2018 | National University of Science and Technology MISIS

nachricht New process allows tailor-made malaria research
16.02.2018 | Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

Im Focus: Interference as a new method for cooling quantum devices

Theoretical physicists propose to use negative interference to control heat flow in quantum devices. Study published in Physical Review Letters

Quantum computer parts are sensitive and need to be cooled to very low temperatures. Their tiny size makes them particularly susceptible to a temperature...

Im Focus: Autonomous 3D scanner supports individual manufacturing processes

Let’s say the armrest is broken in your vintage car. As things stand, you would need a lot of luck and persistence to find the right spare part. But in the world of Industrie 4.0 and production with batch sizes of one, you can simply scan the armrest and print it out. This is made possible by the first ever 3D scanner capable of working autonomously and in real time. The autonomous scanning system will be on display at the Hannover Messe Preview on February 6 and at the Hannover Messe proper from April 23 to 27, 2018 (Hall 6, Booth A30).

Part of the charm of vintage cars is that they stopped making them long ago, so it is special when you do see one out on the roads. If something breaks or...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Fingerprints of quantum entanglement

16.02.2018 | Information Technology

'Living bandages': NUST MISIS scientists develop biocompatible anti-burn nanofibers

16.02.2018 | Health and Medicine

Hubble sees Neptune's mysterious shrinking storm

16.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>