Nigerian Journal of Pharmaceutical Research

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Prescribing Errors in Cardiovascular Diseases in a Tertiary Health Care FacilIty

JE Arute, PO Erah, UC Aguomo, EA Bamigbola


Prescription errors are now known to be contributing to a large number of deaths during the treatment of cardiovascular diseases. However, there is paucity of information about these errors occurring in health facilities in Nigeria. The objective of this study was to investigate the prevalence of prescribing errors in prescriptions for patients with cardiovascular diseases in a Nigerian tertiary health care facility. In a retrospective study, the prescription errors in 156 prescription sheets issued to both in-patients and out–patients attending Madonna University Teaching Hospital between January and December 2007 were evaluated. A total of 17 different types of prescribing errors occurred 459 times in the 156 prescription sheets. An error rate of 29 per 100 prescription sheets was detected. The common errors were absence of signature of prescribers (6.1%), date on prescription (0.9%), patient’s age (1.1%) and sex (0.7%), wrong frequency (2.8%) as well as nonspecification of formulation types (1.1%), strength of drug prescribed (15.7%), frequency (1.7%) and duration of administration (2.6%). It is concluded that many prescribing errors occur in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases in the health facility studied and these call for the need to create awareness of the dangers of prescription errors to all prescribers in Nigeria, generally.

Keywords: Prescribing Error, Cardiovascular Disease, Prescriptions

Nigerian Journal of Pharmaceutical Research, Vol. 9 No 1 pp. 57 – 62 (February 2011)

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