Pharmacology, a backbone of any medical curriculum, is often a subject that also relies on repetition and review.

It is commonplace to see medical students with handmade or commercial flashcards reviewing pharmacology and, to that extent, there are many commercial options for pharmacology learning tools.

No stranger to the medical education realm, Lange attempted to create a focused approach, with 300 common drugs in flashcard form. Now, Usatine Media brings Lange’s series of drug flashcards to the iOS platform.

Here we review this initial version of the app on the iPad, but see below why the product has work to do before we can recommend it as a worthwhile purchase.

The home screen opens on an alphabetical index of medications, with images of the medication in its delivery form (pill, inhaler etc). The app also allows the user to sort the list based on: search, previously bookmarked, and created notes.

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Each of the 300 entries starts with the generic name followed by the trade names. Viewing a complete entry shows extended information ranging from class of medication, uses, dosing, interactions, reactions and many more. In my opinion, the best parts of the app are presented at the very bottom of the entry: Key Patient Counseling points and the Clinical Pearls. Those two factors would be helpful to any medical student, young resident and many other ancillary medical staff.

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There is also the ability to add user-generated notes for future reference or studying. Users can also bookmark the cards based on whether they knew or didn’t know the information.

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Additionally, there is an appendix with a few added topics of use.

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The app’s simple premise seems a bit muddled, though. It is not completely a flashcards app (not ideal layout/format) nor is it a complete educational app either (lack of quizzes etc), and is limited to only 300 medications. Lange’s Top 300 is not as comprehensive of a drug guide as Epocrates or MPR. However, as the app is in the initial release, we would be interested to see the direction that the developers take it.

View of app in landscape mode:

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Price:

  • $39.99 from the App Store

Likes:

  • Clinical pearls and Key Patient counseling points provide value
  • Images of medications

Dislikes:

  • Not ideal for flashcards learning
  • Very odd, hybrid premise seems muddled

Conclusion:

  • A work in progress, currently would not be a top-pick for pharmacology app options
  • Priced similar to the actual flashcards ($38.35-$45), but that may be more than many would find appropriate, especially for a limited number of cards

iTunes Link