Pharmacology advice!!

  1. Ok! So I am about to finish my FIRST semester of nursing school in a very short 5 weeks! And I will start my Adult Health classes and Med-Surg clinical rotations next semester and we will be diving into the wonderful world of Pharmacology! Our professors have already told us to start preparing (mathematics wise) and begin learning conversions for next semester! My problem is that I haven't been that great at math well pretty much ever in my life ! Could anyone give me any advice on what study guides to go buy?? I really want to take advantage of my 5 week break and get a head start so I can be prepared to tackle the spring semester (and catch up on sleep)! Should I look at flashcards and a workbook? Or any specific brands anyone has ever had luck with? Thanks!
  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   BacktotheBeach
    I was in the same boat! Get a good dosage calculation book. Get yourself ready knowing conversions and being able to do simple problems. My school uses Janney and Flahive, Calculation of Drug Dosages. It starts very simple and I highly recommend it. Old editions of these books are fine, too. You can get them cheap online.

    This website is fantastic They will email you a problem a day and tell you how to solve it if you miss it. I did these all summer to prepare myself. If you are weak in math like I am, practice like crazy!!!
  4. by   anonymousstudent
  5. by   pockunit
    We use the Pickar and it's pretty good. I actually started on page one and did a lot of review before I got to the dosage calc, and it helped A LOT. I've found that as I've gotten older, math has started to make a lot more sense to me, or at least I can remember formulas now. You don't actually need to know that many, which helps.

    I'd get the Pickar if you can find a cheap one (I got a free copy from and practice, practice, practice. I don't even use the CD, so if you find one without, jump on it.
  6. by   kylee_adns
    Have you looked ahead to your textbook list? We used a book called calculate with confidence. It was quite easy to understand, and showed four different ways to do all the problems. When calculating, just remember to use common sense! The math portion isn't as complicated as they try to make it seem. Every semester we have med math quizzes. I just had one yesterday and one of the questions was: "Order for 500 mg of Acetaminophen PO Available Acetaminophen 200 mg tablets. How many tablets will you give?
    Example of a drip rate question: IV infusing 0.9% NS at 125ml/HR, your tubing allows 20gtts/ml How many gtts per minute?
    Answer: 125/60 = 2.0833 x 20 = (41.66) 42gtts/minute
    Here is an online resource to get you started:
    If you have an iphone, pda or other smartphone I would suggest getting the Davis Drug Guide for any of those. (I bought a palm T3 on ebay for $25 because my school forbids use of iphones on the floor) It is super easy to use & way faster than always having to look the drugs up in a book!
    You will make it through! Good Luck
  7. by   clucito01
    Thank you to all for the tips and suggestions! I will definitely check everything out and get on this!
  8. by   FoodieJ
    this is all great advice, thanks everyone!