Pharmacology help please

Students General Students


Pharmacology is one of the classes that I have this semester and I am having a little trouble keeping everything classified and trying to memorize things and keep the drugs straight. We have our first test coming up on Friday and it will be over drugs affecting the central nervous system and drugs affecting the Autonomic nervous system. For those of you who have already had pharmacology do you have any study suggestions that helped you through pharmacology and/or helpful websites. I am working my butt off to do well for the test and will be meeting with my study group all next week in preparation for the test.



69 Posts

I haven't had pharmacology yet, but have heard good things about these two websites:

Internet Self Assessment in Pharmacology

You have to register, but it's free - has flashcards, quizzes, etc.

Active Learning Centre

Scroll down to the Pharmacology quiz link - you can define what it will test you on.

Hope this helps!


The Student Nurse Forum


252 Posts

The only way is just to memorize it. Find a comfortable place and just memorize away. When your done with pharm you can dump!~ you will be using a reference from then on like the rest of normal society (learning as you go).



820 Posts

I used Medi-Quik Cards. They are endorsed by the NSNA. You can take the drug cards out that you are studying , and keep them in your pocket, the more you read them, the more you remember.

Hope it helps!



1 Post

Hi I tried clicking on the first link you have in your pharm help websites and it took to me to some stock website. Please correct this.

Daytonite, BSN, RN

4 Articles; 14,603 Posts

Specializes in med/surg, telemetry, IV therapy, mgmt.

These pharmacology classes always start off with this grouping of drugs. What you are going to find is that many of them are antagonists of each other which makes it all even more confusing. I would recommend that you make up charts showing the action, use and side effects of each classification along with the names of some of the drugs included in each category. In some cases you are just going to have to memorize some of the information. What you will find is that, for example, your alpha adrenergic blockers are the same as sympatholytics and they have the same action as parasympathetic drugs. Memorization helps and read the questions on test very carefully. :smackingf


1,714 Posts

By CNS drugs do you mean psych drugs or, say, centrally acting alpha 2 agonists? For me, the psych drugs just required a lot of memorization, since we had to learn each individual drug instead of just classes. For the ANS drugs, and many other chapters, I strongly disagree with just memorizing what they do. Learn how the ANS works. Write down, over and over again, what the effects of the sympathetic and parasympathetic branches do to various parts of the body. Make lists, charts, pictures, flashcards, whatever helps you to learn. You also need to know the receptor types and where they are. The rest should fall into place once you think about it. Beta blockers, for example, block the action of the sympathetic nervous system at the heart and lungs (unless they're cardiospecific, and only block beta 1 receptors). At the heart, the symp increases heart rate and force of contraction, thereby increasing cardiac output. A beta blocker, then, slows down both of these so the heart doesn't have to work as hard. At the beta 2 receptors at the lungs, the symp system dilates the bronchi. Therefore, beta blockers constrict them. What's a possible adverse effect? Well, you want to use caution giving these to asthmatics or COPD patients. Most of this follows if you really know your physiology. I got an A in pharm last semester and didn't think it was all that tough, but I did study my rear end off. You have to know the physio, because you do have to retain this stuff all the way until the NCLEX. That's just my two cents.

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