Enhancing clinical practice through pharmaceutical science

A useful reference which brings science and practice together for those learning about or teaching pharmacy.

‘Integrated pharmacy case studies’ book cover

The concept of ‘Integrated pharmacy case studies’ (published by Pharmaceutical Press, Royal Pharmaceutical Society) is the integration of science with practice through the use of case studies. The text presents the fundamentals of pharmaceutical chemistry, pharmacology, pharmaceutics and therapeutics within a direct patient care context. Each of the case studies was first drafted by practising pharmacists, working in community or hospital, based on their own clinical experience.

The science was then added by the editorial team, academics from University College London School of Pharmacy. The cases are organised into sections broadly based on the British National Formulary. This has allowed some structure but the diverse nature of the cases reflects the fact that patients often experience multiple pathologies. The case studies vary in complexity and are independent of each other. It is not intended for them to be read sequentially.

At the beginning of each case, a set of learning objectives is presented, which summarises what is contained within the case study and identifies what the reader should achieve at the end. Each case study begins with information about the patient, including the medical history and the drug history. This information corresponds to what might be available in a patient’s medical record. This is interspersed with a series of questions that a pharmacist could ask or questions that a pharmacist could receive from another healthcare professional or from a patient or relative. This section is then followed by the case discussion. Discrete answers to the questions raised are not always provided because often there is no right and wrong answer. It is in this section that the practice and science elements are brought together. The case ends with sections on references and further reading, extended learning questions and additional practice points.

This book is not intended to be a textbook. It does not detail the pharmacology, chemistry, indications, posology, contraindications, side effects and formulations for every drug.

There are many excellent textbooks available that offer a more detailed description of these subjects. The book is intended to be used by undergraduate pharmacy students and preregistration trainees. Tutors and lecturers will also find it a useful resource when planning their clinical teaching. The book illustrates well how clinical practice can be enhanced by pharmaceutical science.


‘Integrated pharmacy case studies’, by Sally-Anne Francis, Felicity Smith, John Malkinson, Andrew Constanti and Kevin Taylor. Pp xix + 432. Price £39.99. London: Pharmaceutical Press; 2015. ISBN 978 0 85369 884 5

Last updated
The Pharmaceutical Journal, PJ, December 2015, Vol 295, No 7884;295(7884):DOI:10.1211/PJ.2015.20200014