Clinical Reference: Drug Information

Selecting a Resource for your Drug Information Question

What resource should I begin with? It depends upon the type of question. This table identifies specific resources, as starting points, to answer common question types (listed alphabetically). 

Resources by Question Type

Question Type First Choices Next Choices

Adverse effects

Meyler's Side Effects of Drugs (print book), AHFS Drug Information

Facts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)UpToDate

Bioequivalency

FDA Electronic Orange Book

AHFS Drug Information

Chemical Data

AHFS Drug InformationNLM Drug Information Portal

Micromedex (contact for password-protected access)

Clinical Trials

ClinicalTrials.gov

WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform

Comparative Information

AHFS Drug InformationFacts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

EMBASE, PubMed

Contraindications

AHFS Drug InformationFacts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

Manufacturers’ websites, NLM Drug Information PortalPubMed

Cost

UpToDate, CMS website

(Note: Red Book is no longer available)

Commercial web sites such as GoodRX.com †, contacting Manufacturer(s)

Disease state information

Access PharmacyUpToDate

Stat!RefMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)VisualDX

Dosage Recommendations

AHFS Drug InformationFacts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

DailyMed, Manufacturers’ websites

Drug administration

AHFS Drug InformationFacts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

Manufacturers’ websites, NLM Drug Information Portal

Drug interactions (drug-drug, drug-food, drug-lab tests, drug-disease, etc.)

Facts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

Natural MedicinesUpToDate - Drug Interactions

Drugs in pregnancy and lactation

Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation (Briggs), (Briggs also available via Facts & Comparisons), LactMed, Medications and Mothers' Milk

AHFS Drug InformationNatural Medicines 

Herbal, natural & homeopathic products, dietary supplements

Natural Medicines

MEDLINEPlus, Embase, Micromedex (contact for password-protected access), product websites

Identification (foreign)

Facts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

European Medicines Agency (EMEA)Embase

Identification (domestic)

Facts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)NLM Pillbox

product websites (see How Supplied section of package insert)

Immunization schedules

CDC website, WHO website

UpToDate, Immunization Action Coalition

Industry

BCC ResearchNexis Uni (contains Pink Sheet, MedTech Insight, In Vivo, Scrip Intelligence)

  FactivaCenterwatchNetAdvantage 

IV compatibility

Interactive Handbook on Injectable Drugs (includes Trissel's), Pediatric Injectable Drugs: The Teddy Bear Book

Micromedex (contact for password-protected access)

Manufacturer’s contact information

Facts & Comparisons

Manufacturers' websites

Non-proprietary and Proprietary Names

AHFS Drug InformationDrugs@FDAFacts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

UpToDateDailyMed, product websites

Nursing considerations

Lippincott's Nursing Drug Guide

Davis' Drug Guide

Over-the-counter products

Facts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

Product websites

Patient counseling/education

Facts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

MEDLINEPlusNatural MedicinesFDA for Consumers

Pharmacokinetics

AHFS Drug InformationFacts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

DailyMed, product websites, EmbasePubMed

Pharmacology

AHFS Drug Information, Access PharmacyFacts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

Embase, product websites, NLM Drug Information Portal

Regulatory/legal information

FDA website, Access Pharmacy, Nexis Uni

USA.gov

Therapeutic use (approved indications)

AHFS Drug InformationFacts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

DailyMed, FDA website

Therapeutic use (off-label uses)

AHFS Drug InformationMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

PubMed

Toxicology/poisoning

Facts & ComparisonsMicromedex (contact for password-protected access)

ToxNet

Current news

Nexis Uni, Factiva

 News websites

†Commercial website, use for informational purposes only.

Table adapted from the University of Washington Health Sciences Library; reused and revised with permission. 

Apps / Mobile Databases

mobileMicromedex is available for free to UNC-CH students, faculty, and staff.  You must be on campus to register but may be off campus when using your device. Instructions for registering are at Mobile Instructions.

The UpToDate app is also available for Android, iPhone and Windows. Instructions for registering are at Mobile Instructions.

A list of additional apps and mobile resources is in the Mobile Health & Research Apps guide

Natural Medicines, Supplements, and Herbals

Contact Rebecca

Rebecca Carlson, MLS, AHIP's picture
Rebecca Carlson, MLS, AHIP
Asklib.hsl.unc.edu can provide help through email, chat, or phone

Looking for IPA?

The University Libraries no longer subscribes to International Pharmaceutical Abstracts (IPA), but you can search Scopus to find most of the journals in IPA.