Davis’s Drug Guide for Nurses 16th Edition


Davis’s Drug Guide for Nurses 16th Edition

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Author: April Hazard Vallerand,
Cynthia A. Sanoski
Edition: 16th Edition
Year: 2020
Language: English
ISBN 13: 978-0803677555;
Publisher: F.A. Davis Company
ISBN 10: 171964005X
Pages: 1489
File: PDF
Price: 5.99$
Digital delivery: Via Email check your SPAM

Davis’s Drug Guide for Nurses Seventeenth Edition

#1 DRUG BOOK for Nursing Students! “This is the perfect drug book for nursing school! All the information on meds is in-depth and all that you need to know.”Abby W.


Davis’s Drug Guide for Nurses®, Seventeenth Edition delivers all the information you need to administer medications safely across the lifespan—well-organized monographs for hundreds of generic and thousands of trade-name drugs.


Redeem the access code to unlock your one-year, Davis’s Drug Guide Online, powered by Unbound Medicine. You’ll have access to more than 1,700 monographs from your desktop, laptop, or any mobile device with a web browser.

  • Search the complete 5,000-drug database and appendices quickly and efficiently.
  • Build your knowledge with extensively cross-referenced drugs.
  • Keep up to date with FDA drug news.


  • New! The AGS Beers Criteria for Potentially Inappropriate Medication Use in Older Adults
  • #1 Drug Guide for patient safety
    • Red tab for high alert medications, plus in-depth high alert and patient safety coverage
    • Red, capitalized letters for life-threatening side effects
    • REMS (Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies) icon
    • Drug-drug, drug-food, drug-natural product interactions
  • Special considerations for patient populations.
    • Geri’s heading identifies special concerns for older adults.
    • OB and Last headings highlight information for pregnant and breastfeeding patients.
    • Pedi’s heading identifies concerns for children.
    • Rep heading identifies considerations for patients of reproductive age.
  • IV Administration subheads
  • Pharmacogenomic content
  • Canadian-specific content
  • In-depth guidance for patient and family teaching


  • Audio Library of 1,200+ drug names help you pronounce important terms
  • Two tutorials, each with a self-test
    • Preventing Medication Errors
    • Psychotropic Drugs
  • Easy-to-Use Calculators
    • Body mass index (BMI)
    • Metric conversions
    • IV drip rates
    • Dosage/KG
    • Fahrenheit/Celsius
  • Interactive Case Studies – brief, real-life scenarios that are followed by a series of questions
  • Audio podcasts delivering information on…
    • Risk Evaluation Mitigation Systems (REMS)
    • How to use Davis’s Drug Guide for Nurses®
    • Detecting and managing ADRs
    • Evidence-based practice and Pharmacotherapeutics
    • Pharmacogenomics
    • Medication errors
    • Special dosing considerations
    • Educating patients about Safe Medication Use
  • Video clips illustrating the safe administration of medications


Five Stars. “I LOVE that this includes nursing interventions, patient teaching, and an online access code. Highly recommend.”—E.G.
Accurate and up to date“Top notch for nursing students! Includes many things other drug guides leave out! Highly recommend!”—Kimberly W.
Nursing school lifesaver. “This book has been great for my clinical experience databases. I love that it offers potential nurse diagnosis based off the medication. My school offers an electronic edition for free to use but I like hard copy books.”—P.M.


Implications for Nurses
MEDICATION ERRORS: Improving Practices and Patient Safety
The Pediatric Patient
The Older Adult Patient
The Patient of Reproductive Age
Renal Impairment
Hepatic Impairment
Heart Failure
Body Size
Drug Interactions
Anti-Alzheimer’s agents
Antianxiety agents
Antiparkinson agents
Antiplatelet agents
Antiulcer agents.
Bone resorption inhibitors
Calcium channel blockers
Central nervous system stimulants
Lipid-lowering agents
Minerals/electrolytes/pH modifiers.
Natural/Herbal Products
Nonopioid analgesics
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents
Opioid analgesics
Skeletal muscle relaxants
Vaccines/immunizing agents
Vascular headache suppressants
Weight control agents
Appendix A. Recent Drug Approvals
Appendix B. Combination Drugs
Appendix C. Ophthalmic Medications.
Appendix D. Medication Administration Techniques
Appendix E. Administering Medications to Children.
Appendix F. Formulas Helpful for Calculating Doses
Appendix G. Pediatric Dosage Calculations
Appendix H. Normal Values of Common Laboratory Tests
Appendix I. Controlled Substance Schedules.
Appendix J. Equianalgesic Dosing Guidelines
Appendix K. Food Sources for Specific Nutrients
Appendix L. Insulins and Insulin Therapy.
Appendix M. Canadian and U.S. Pharmaceutical Practices
Appendix N. Routine Pediatric and Adult Immunizations


Davis’s Drug Guide for Nurses provides comprehensive, up-to-date drug information in well-organized, nursing-focused monographs. It also includes extensive supplemental material in 16 appendices that thoroughly address the issue of safe medication administration and educate the reader about 50 different therapeutic classes of drugs. In this 16th edition, we have continued the tradition of focusing on safe medication administration by including Medication Safety Tools and even more information about health care’s most vulnerable patients: children, the elderly, pregnant women, and breastfeeding mothers. Look for more Pedi, Geri, OB, and Lactation headings throughout the monographs. In addition, we’ve included information relevant to Canadian students and nurses.
You’ll find an appendix comparing Canadian and U.S. pharmaceutical practices, more Canada-only combination drugs in the Combination Drugs appendix, and additional Canadian brand names in the drug monographs. To help you find this information quickly, we’ve also added a maple leaf icon ( ) in the index next to each Canadian entry. We have added pharmacogenomic information throughout numerous monographs to guide the nurse in selecting and monitoring various drug therapies. To help you find this information quickly, we’ve added a double helix icon ( ) to denote this information as it applies to specific drugs. Use this book to enhance your competence in implementing and evaluating medication therapies. The following sections describe the organization of Davis’s Drug Guide for Nurses and explain how to quickly find the information you need.

Safe Medication Use Articles

“Medication Errors: Improving Practices and Patient Safety,” “Detecting and Managing Adverse Drug Reactions,” “Overview of Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Systems (REMS),” “Special Dosing Considerations,” and “Educating Patients About Safe Medication Use” comprise the safe medication
use articles and provide an overview of the medication safety issues that confront practitioners and patients. Leading off this series, the medication errors article familiarizes you with the systems issues and clinical situations repeatedly implicated in medication errors and suggests practical means to avoid them. It also teaches you about high alert medications, which have a greater potential to cause patient harm than other medications. “Detecting and Managing Adverse Drug Reactions” explains the different types of adverse reactions and provides guidance on how to detect and manage them. “Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies (REMS)” explains strategies developed by the pharmaceutical industry and required by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to minimize adverse drug reactions from potentially dangerous drugs. We have highlighted the drugs that currently have approved REMS programs associated with their use by adding a REMS label at the top of applicable drug monographs.
“Special Dosing Considerations” identifies the patient populations, such as neonates and patients with renal impairment, who require careful dose adjustments to ensure optimal therapeutic outcomes. “Educating Patients About Medication Use” reviews the most important teaching points for nurses to discuss with their patients and their families. In addition to these safety articles, other critical information is highlighted in red throughout the drug monographs. This allows the reader to quickly identify important information and to see how nursing practice, including assessment,
implementation, and patient teaching, relates to it.

Classifications Profile

Medications in the same therapeutic class often share similar mechanisms of action, assessment guidelines, precautions, and interactions. The Classifications Profile provides summaries of the major therapeutic classifications used in Davis’s Drug Guide for Nurses. It also provides patient teaching information common to all agents within the class and a list of drugs within each class.

Medication Safety Tools

Updated for this edition is a section with tables and charts that nurses can use for a quick but thorough reference to information that will help them avoid making medication errors. It includes lists of drugs that are associated with adverse reactions and falls in the elderly; proper dosing for pediatric intravenous medications; confused drug names; FDA-approved Tall Man letters and more.

Drug Monographs

Drug monographs are organized in the following manner:

High Alert Status: Some medications, such as chemotherapeutic agents, anticoagulants, and insulins, have a greater potential for harm than others. These medications have been identified by the Institute for Safe Medication Practices as high alert drugs. Davis’s Drug Guide for Nurses
includes a high alert tab in the upper right corner of the monograph header for inappropriate medications to alert the nurse to the medication’s risk. The term “high alert” is used in other parts of the monograph as well, to help the nurse administer these medications safely. See the article “Medication Errors: Improving Practices and Patient Safety” for a complete list of high alert medications in Davis’s Drug Guide for Nurses. Refer to for all solutions, groups, and individual high alert drugs.

Generic/Brand Name: The generic name appears first, with a pronunciation key, followed by an alphabetical list of trade names. Canadian trade names are preceded by a maple leaf ( ). Brand names that have been discontinued have a slash through them (Decadron). Common names,
abbreviations and selected foreign names are also included.

Classification: The therapeutic classification, which categorizes drugs by the disease state they are used to treat, appears first, followed by the pharmacologic classification, which is based on the drug’s mechanism of action.

Controlled Substance Schedule: All drugs regulated by federal law are placed into one of five schedules, based on the drug’s medicinal value, harmfulness, and potential for abuse or addiction. Schedule I drugs, the most dangerous and has no medicinal value, are not included in Davis’s
Drug Guide for Nurses. (See Appendix I for a description of the Schedule of Controlled Substances.)

Pregnancy Category: The FDA recently recommended discontinuation of the Pregnancy Category system (A, B, C, D, and X) since this categorization may not appropriately communicate the risk that a drug may have during pregnancy or breastfeeding. Based on this guidance, the Pregnancy Categories have been removed from each of the drug monographs. These pregnancy letter categories have been replaced in drug prescribing information with a narrative summary that describes the potential risk of using the drug during pregnancy and breastfeeding as well as in women and men of reproductive potential. The drug monographs have been enhanced with this detailed information in these patient populations.

Indications: Medications are approved by the FDA for specific disease states. This section identifies the diseases or conditions for which the drug is commonly used and includes significant unlabeled uses as well.

Action: This section contains a concise description of how the drug produces the desired therapeutic effect.

Pharmacokinetics: Pharmacokinetics refers to the way the body processes a medication by absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion. This section also includes information on the drug’s half-life.

  • Absorption: Absorption describes the process that follows drug administration and its subsequent delivery to the systemic circulation. If only a small fraction is absorbed following oral administration (diminished bioavailability), then the oral dose must be much greater than the parenteral dose. Absorption into systemic circulation also follows other routes of administration such as topical,
    transdermal, intramuscular, subcutaneous, rectal, and ophthalmic routes. Drugs administered
    intravenously are 100% bioavailable.
  • Distribution: This section comments on the drug’s distribution in body tissues and fluids. Distribution becomes important in choosing one drug over another, as in selecting an antibiotic that will penetrate the central nervous system to treat meningitis or in avoiding drugs that cross the placenta or concentrate in breast milk. Information on protein binding is included for drugs that are 95% bound to plasma proteins, which has implications for drug-drug interactions.
  • Metabolism and Excretion: Drugs are primarily eliminated from the body either by hepatic conversion to active or inactive compounds (metabolism or biotransformation) and subsequent excretion by the kidneys or by renal elimination of the unchanged drugs. Therefore, drug metabolism and excretion information are important in determining dosage regimens and intervals for patients with impaired renal or hepatic function. The creatinine clearance (CCr) helps quantify renal function and guides dosage adjustments. Formulas to estimate CCR are included in Appendix F.
  • Half-Life: The half-life of a drug is the amount of time it takes for the drug concentration to decrease by 50% and roughly correlates with the drug’s duration of action. Half-lives are given for drugs assuming the patient has normal renal or hepatic function. Conditions that alter the half-life are noted.

Time/Action Profile: The time/action profile table provides the drug’s onset of action, peak effect, and duration of activity. This information can aid in planning administration schedules and allows the reader to appreciate differences in choosing one route over another.
Contraindications and Precautions: Situations in which drug use should be avoided are listed as contraindications. In general, most drugs are contraindicated in pregnancy or lactation, unless the potential benefits outweigh the possible risks to the mother or baby (e.g., anticonvulsants,
antihypertensives, and antiretrovirals). Contraindications may be absolute (i.e., the drug in question should be avoided completely) or relative, in which certain clinical situations may allow cautious use of the drug. The precautions portion includes disease states or clinical situations in which drug use involves particular risks or in which dosage modification may be necessary. Extreme cautions are noted separately to draw attention to conditions under which the use of the drug results in serious, potentially life-threatening consequences.
Adverse Reactions and Side Effects: Although it is not possible to include all reported reactions, major side effects for all drugs are included. Life-threatening adverse reactions or side effects are CAPITALIZED, and the most frequent side effects are underlined. Those underlined generally have an incidence of 10% or greater. Those not underlined occur in fewer than 10% but more than 1% of patients. Although life-threatening reactions may be rare (fewer than 1%), they are included because of their significance. The following abbreviations are used for body systems:
CNS: central nervous system
EENT: eye, ear, nose, and throat
Resp: respiratory
CV: cardiovascular
GI: gastrointestinal
GU: genitourinary
Derm: dermatologic
Endo: endocrinologic
F and E: fluid and electrolyte
Hemat: hematologic
Local: local
Metab: metabolic
MS: musculoskeletal
Neuro: neurologic
Misc: miscellaneous
Rep: reproductive

Interactions: Drug interactions are a significant risk for patients. As the number of medications a patient receives increases, so does the likelihood of drug-drug interactions. This section provides the most important drug-drug interactions and their physiological effects. Significant drug-food and drug natural product interactions are also noted as are recommendations for avoiding or minimizing these interactions.

Route and Dosage: Routes of administration are grouped together and include recommended doses for adults, children, and other more specific age groups (such as geriatric patients). Dosage units are expressed in the terms in which they are usually prescribed. For example, penicillin G dosage is given in units rather than in milligrams. Dosing intervals also are provided in the manner in which they are frequently ordered. If a specific clinical situation (indication) requires a different dose or interval, this is listed separately for clarity. Specific dosing regimens for hepatic or renal impairment are also included.

Availability: This section lists the strengths and concentrations of available dose forms. Such information is useful in planning more convenient regimens (fewer tablets/capsules, less injection volume) and in determining whether certain dosage forms are available (suppositories, oral concentrates, sustained- or extended-release forms). Flavors of oral liquids and chewable tablets have been included to improve compliance and adherence in pediatric patients. General availability and average wholesale prices of commonly prescribed drugs have also been added as an aid to nurses with prescriptive authority.

Nursing Implications: This section helps the nurse apply the nursing process to pharmacotherapeutics. The subsections provide a step-by-step guide to clinical assessment, implementation (drug administration), and evaluation of the outcomes of pharmacologic therapy.

  • Assessment: This section includes guidelines for assessing patient history and physical data before and during drug therapy. Assessments specific to the drug’s various indications are also included. The Lab Test Considerations section provides the nurse with information regarding which laboratory tests to monitor and how the results may be affected by the medication. It also includes dose modifications required for changes in lab values. Toxicity and Overdose alert the nurse to therapeutic serum drug concentrations that must be monitored and signs and symptoms of toxicity. The antidote and treatment for toxicity or overdose of appropriate medications also are included.
  • Potential Nursing Diagnoses: The two or three most pertinent North American Nursing Diagnoses Association (NANDA) diagnoses that potentially apply to a patient receiving the medication are listed. Each diagnosis includes the pharmacologic effect from which the diagnosis has been derived. For instance, the patient receiving immunosuppressant drugs should be diagnosed with a Risk for Infection. The diagnosis is followed by the term Side Effects in parentheses. Since patient education is fundamental to all nurse-patient interactions, the diagnosis Deficient Knowledge should be assumed to be a nursing diagnosis applicable to all drugs.
  • Implementation: Guidelines specific for medication administration are discussed in this subsection. High Alert information, i.e., information that directly relates to preventing medication errors with inherently dangerous drugs, is included first if applicable. Sound-alike look-alike name confusion alerts are also included here. Other headings in this section provide data regarding routes of administration. PO describes when and how to administer the drug, whether tablets may be crushed or capsules opened, and when to administer the medication in relation to food. In addition, we have identified which opioids have abuse-deterrent properties and describe the mechanism of these properties within the monograph. The IV Administration section includes specific information about administering the medication intravenously. This section has been thoroughly updated and contains a prominent IV Administration heading that introduces this
    section. Bold, red headings are included to highlight the recommended diluents and concentrations. These headings complement the rate heading and make this critical information easy to find. Several subsections comprise the IV Administration section. The first section, IV Push,
    which refers to administering medications from a syringe directly into a saline lock, Y-site of IV tubing, or a 3-way stopcock, provides details for reconstitution, concentration, dilution, and rate. Rate is also included in both other methods of IV administration, direct or intermittent infusion. Intermittent Infusion and Continuous Infusion specify standard dilution solutions and amounts, stability information, and rates. In addition, a quick reference for information about dilution amounts in neonates and infants, who are extremely sensitive to excess fluids, is contained in the new Medication Safety Tools section. Y-Site Compatibility/Incompatibility identifies medications compatible or incompatible with each drug when administered via Y-site injection or 3-way stopcock in IV tubing. Additive Compatibility/Incompatibility identifies medications compatible or incompatible when admixed in solution. Compatibility of diluted medications administered through a Y-site for continuous or intermittent infusion is usually limited to 24 hours. Solution Compatibility/Incompatibility identifies compatible or incompatible solutions for dilution for administration purposes. Compatibility information is compiled from Micromedex and the manufacturer’s package insert.
  • Patient/Family Teaching: This section includes information that should be taught to patients and/or families of patients. Side effects that should be reported, information on minimizing and managing side effects, details on administration, and follow-up requirements are presented. The nurse also should refer to the Implementation section for specific information to teach the patient and family about taking the medication. Home Care Issues discusses aspects to be considered for medications taken in the home setting.
  • Evaluation: Outcome criteria for determination of the effectiveness of the medication are provided.

About the author:

April Hazard Vallerand Ph.D. RN FAAN, College of Nursing Alumni Endowed Professor at Wayne State University has focused her research on understanding the factors that affect the functional status and the barriers to improving pain management in patients with pain in a variety of settings. Her current research project, which was funded by the National Cancer Institute, focuses on improving functional status in African Americans with cancer pain.

A recognized nursing leader and scholar, Dr. Vallerand is widely published on the topic of pain management, including the maintenance and improvement of functional status in patients with chronic pain, pain-related disparities, cancer pain management, symptom clusters in patients with cancer, pharmacological management of pain, the use of opioids in the management of chronic pain, self-treatment of pain in the community, and the perceived control and coping in patients with chronic pain.

Dr. Vallerand earned her BSN from Mount St. Mary’s College, MSN from California State University, and Ph.D. in nursing from the University of Pennsylvania. She also held a postdoctoral fellowship in Psychosocial Oncology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing.

Reviews about the ebook:

  • Mandi Nicole:
    Required for a nursing program, glad to receive the latest edition and cheaper price in new condition, have already used book several times for pharmacology class and so happy I purchased since received an A on my presentation due to having this book. Lists the medications: generic, trade name, classification, indications, action, pharmacokinetics, interactions, side effects, route/dosage, nursing implications, implementation, patient teaching, evaluation/desired outcomes, contraindications/precautions.
  • Lauren:
    This book has a LOT of drugs that are new to the Pharmaceutical world. I love that I have the handheld version because I can carry it on my phone and if I need something, I can just bring it up on my phone and review it with the patient if needed.
  • Bre Sutton:
    Came earlier than expected and is in great condition! I’ve used older editions in the past and absolutely love the content. I preordered the book so I was also able to get a discount on the book.
  • Paul:
    Every nurse needs a nursing drug guide. Let’s face it. Nurses know a lot, but not everything. The drug book really lays it out so that nurses can explain to their patients the effects of the drug. What it is doing in their body and the possible side effects. It’s more professional than googling a medication or getting it off of web MD.
  • Julia:
    Helpful book with lots of good information on lots of drugs, but man.
  • Walawa05:
    This is a must-have purchase for a nursing student. It tells you what you need to know without all the “fluff”.
  • Alyssa:
    Needed for nursing, good price for this valuable resource.
  • Pascale:
    Very good for meds research for nurses and students!
  • Jessie:
    Saved me in pharmacology for nursing!

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