Perception and Memory Experiments Using Drug Names [2010, Canada] (ICPSR 34122)
Drug names that look and sound alike are a leading cause of medication errors (e.g., diazepam and diltiazem, hydroxyzine and hydralazine, Paxil and Taxol, fomepizole and omeprazole, Foradil and Toradol). Observational studies of dispensing in outpatient pharmacies suggest that the rate of wrong drug errors -- the type most likely to be the result of name confusion -- is roughly 0.13 percent. With 3.9 billion prescriptions dispensed in 2009, that translates to 5 million wrong drug errors per year in the United States. The purpose of this overall project was to develop, demonstrate, and disseminate a standard protocol for pre-approval testing of drug names, including a standard battery of psycholinguistic tests and data analytic methods, all with comparison to control names and to refine and demonstrate analytic methods by conducting a series of visual perception, auditory perception, and short term memory experiments using drug names as stimuli. The achievement of this aim will provide both regulators and pharmaceutical manufacturers with a scientifically validated, step-by-step method for testing new drug names for confusability. The data for this collection come from four experiments. In each experiment, participants are tested on their ability to correctly identify drug names under four conditions (see study design). Variables include participant reaction time to identify drug names and the percent participants correctly or incorrectly identified drug names. Study participants include medical doctors, nurse practitioners, pharmacists, and pharmacy technicians. Other variables include participant gender, education degree held, primary language spoken, and employment location.
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Lambert, Bruce L., Valentina Jelincic, and David U. Perception and Memory Experiments Using Drug Names [2010, Canada]. ICPSR34122-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2013-04-30. http://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR34122.v1
Persistent URL: http://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR34122.v1
Scope of Study
Study Purpose: The purpose of the present study was to refine and demonstrate analytic methods by conducting a series of visual perception, audutory perception, and short term memory experiments using drug names as stimuli.
Study Design: There were four experiments in this study. For experiment one, Progressive Demasking Experiment (Part 1), the principal investigators used a cross-sectional, observational design to study clinicians' ability to correctly identify drug names presented visually on a laptop computer screen. The task that subjects engaged in is known as progressive demasking because it involves identifying a visual stimulus as it is progressively revealed from behind an obscuring mask of numbers. For experiment two, Visual Perception ("Pick from Pair") Experiment (Part 2), the principal investigators used a cross-sectional, observational design to study participants' ability to correctly select a target drug name from a pair of similar drug names after a brief visual presentation of the target on a computer monitor. For experiment three, Auditory Perception Experiment (Part 3), the principal investigators used a cross-sectional, observational design to study clinicians' ability to correctly identify a spoken drug name played back over headphones against a background of multi-speaker babble. This task is known as auditory perceptual identification. For experiment four, Recognition Memory Experiment (Part 4), the principal investigators used a cross-sectional, observational design to study clinicians' ability to correctly remember a drug name after it is briefly displayed on a computer screen. This task is known as recognition memory.
Extent of Processing: ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:
- Created variable labels and/or value labels.
- Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.
Original ICPSR Release: 2013-04-03
- 2013-04-30 Updated list of principal investigators.
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