App Review

Two free, comprehensive drug reference apps for your practice

The Epocrates and Medscape apps could allow for rapid decision making

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I understand that you as an ObGyn do not have the time or bandwidth to “vet” the available mobile apps for your practice. However, that does not mean you need to forgo using apps that could make your clinical life a little easier if possible. In this continuation of my “APP review” series, I focus on drug reference apps, which generally include the names of drugs, their indications, dosages, pharmacology, drug-drug interactions, contraindications, cost, and identifying characteristics.1 Drug reference apps, along with medical calculator and disease diagnosis apps, are reported as most useful by health care professionals and medical or nursing students.1 Drug reference apps are particularly popular among residents and medical students as the apps allow for rapid decision making.2

I have selected 2 drug reference apps—Epocrates and Medscape—to report here as both of these apps are free and are the only apps that appear in independent comprehensive studies.1,3 I particularly like Epocrates’ pill identification function for those patients who have forgotten the name of the medication they use but have the actual pill with them. I find Medscape’s additional information on diseases, conditions, and medical procedures especially useful for the times I have forgotten the condition that the medication is indicated for.

The recommended apps are listed in the TABLE alphabetically and are detailed with a shortened version of the APPLICATIONS scoring system, APPLI (app comprehensiveness, price, platform, literature use, and important special features).4 Visit the OBG Management website to download the apps featured.

Watch for my next column in which I will recommend, according to APPLI, the top apps for patients to use to track their menstrual cycles.

Share your thoughts! Send your Letter to the Editor to rbarbieri@frontlinemedcom.com. Please include your name and the city and state in which you practice.

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