Drug Interactions in Neurocritical Care

Brian Spoelhof, Salia Farrokh, Lucia Rivera-Lara

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Drug–drug interactions (DDIs) are common and avoidable complications that are associated with poor patient outcomes. Neurocritical care patients may be at particular risk for DDIs due to alterations in pharmacokinetic profiles and exposure to medications with a high DDI risk. This review describes the principles of DDI pharmacology, common and severe DDIs in Neurocritical care, and recommendations to minimize adverse outcomes. A review of published literature was performed using PubMed by searching for ‘Drug Interaction’ and several high DDI risk and common neurocritical care medications. Key medication classes included anticoagulants, antimicrobials, antiepileptics, antihypertensives, sedatives, and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. Additional literature was also reviewed to determine the risk in neurocritical care and potential therapeutic alternatives. Clinicians should be aware of interactions in this setting, the long-term complications, and therapeutic alternatives.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)287-296
Number of pages10
JournalNeurocritical care
Issue number2
StatePublished - Oct 1 2017


  • Adverse drug reactions
  • Antiepileptics
  • Calcium channel blockers
  • Drug interactions
  • Drug metabolism
  • Neurocritical care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology


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