Those who use ‘Stockley’s’ as a hardback book or via MedicinesComplete (www.medicinescomplete.com) will be aware that it provides comprehensive, evidence-based guidance on the management of drug interactions. An essential resource for pharmacists, ‘Stockley’s Drug Interactions 2015’ (published by Pharmaceutical Press, owned by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society) presents the information and guidance in a concise format. The depth of information is pitched at the right level for a quick reference source providing sufficient data and clear guidance for use in practice. This pocket companion is easy to navigate and, within the time it takes to thumb through a few entries, the user will be familiar with the meaning of the well designed ratings symbols.
There are some things to consider before purchasing. Firstly, there are a few gaps in coverage. Antiretroviral agents, anaesthetics and cancer drugs are not comprehensively covered but these are specialist areas where more data and expertise are needed to come to a decision than can realistically be included in a ‘quick reference’ resource. Secondly, the book is aimed at practitioners who already have some knowledge and skills to manage drug interactions and does not give the detailed background and explanations needed by those who are studying.
After purchase, there are some ‘in use’ considerations. There are some inconsistencies as to whether an interaction is classified under the drug affected by the interaction or the drug responsible for the interaction, so you could miss things if thumbing through the alphabetically arranged content. This is rectified by a good index at the back but there is still the need to check an interaction by looking up both drugs in the index.
As with all reference resources, there has to be some compromise, but the editorial decisions are sensible and the book is excellent value for money. It may be a little larger than the average pocket but it is easy to carry and keep handy on a bench or desk. This book will provide peripatetic practitioners with concise information and clear advice that is evidence based and fully referenced.
‘Stockley’s drug interactions 2015 pocket companion’, edited by Claire L Preston. Pp 720. Price £25.99. London: Pharmaceutical Press; 2015. ISBN 978 0 85711 167 8