Baby Fever?!

There have been three adorable babies born recently at the Deer River Memorial Hospital 🙂

I’ve had a chance to see them all, either while walking by the nursery where they preform the hearing test, or while doing discharge medication counseling for the new mommies before they leave the hospital.  One of the pharmacists at the hospital is convinced I have “baby fever” because I always talk about how adorable the babies are, and how it makes me excited to have my own.  Trust me, not ready for that, but excited for it in at least a couple years.


Medication counseling is done by the pharmacist for all patients prior to discharge from the hospital.  This is to ensure that patients are aware of the changes made to their medications, the proper way to take their medications, and side effects that may occur.  For new mothers, their medication lists usually include iron supplements and multivitamins, which are pretty straightforward to counsel on.  Iron supplements can cause stomach upset, discolor the stool, and cause constipation – which is a significantly bigger issue for new mothers, as it can be much more painful in the few months immediately post-partum.  This is an important counseling point, so that new mothers can take steps to prevent iron-induced constipation such as drinking plenty of fluids and getting fiber in their diet.


Medication counseling for other patients is usually more extensive, and the medication changes can either be minimal, or extensive.  It is nice that the pharmacist is able to provide this counseling while the patient is still in the hospital, where they are usually comfortable in their hospital bed, and willing to talk about their medications.  Sometimes, when patients just get out of the hospital and pick up their medications from a community pharmacy, they are tired, or their pain medications have worn off and they are in pain again, making them less likely to want to talk to a pharmacist about any changes or additions to their medication therapy.

I really enjoy talking with patients, especially the new mommies, so I can see their cute bundles of joy.


In other news, I spoke to one of the orthopedic surgeons today about updating the pre-op antimicrobial prophylaxis order set to reflect the current guidelines.  He was very receptive to making the changes, which was basically a dosage increase.  Current guidelines recommend cefazolin 2 grams IV within 60 minutes prior to orthopedic procedures involving implants, and the use of 3 grams if the patient weights more than 120 kg.  Prior to this, the pre-op orders called for cefazolin 1 gram IV for patients less than 80 kg, and 2 grams for those who weigh more than 80 kg.  I presented all of my recommended updates to the Pharmacy and Therapeutics Committee earlier this week, and I need to talk with a few more surgeons and then the physicians at the clinic, before making the changes on the order sets.  It is exciting to be leading this effort!

T-6 days before Turkey Day!! WHOO HOOO


– Heather




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