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Course Description

Credit Units: 2
Lecturer: Dr. IKWUKA A.O. (MD, Sp. Cert., PhD Medicine) Email Id:, College of Health Sciences, Department of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Course description:

This course is a continuation and the part two of two parts of Pharmacology, Therapeutics and Pharmacovigilance for student nurses of the BNSc Nursing Science programme. It is designed to equip the student nurse with knowledge and skills to apply the principles of pharmacology and therapeutics in drug administration. It will also enable the student to understand nursing responsibilities and the need for safety monitoring of drugs, vaccines and other health products. Additionally, it will equip the student nurse in patient safety issues through pharmacovigilance, diagnosis and reporting of adverse events. Students shall also engage in the discussion of current primary research literature in the field of pharmacology, therapeutics and pharmacovigilance. 

This course includes the following lecture themes: The drugs listed below will be discussed under the following headings: 

  1. Introduction/group 2. Mechanism of action 3. Pharmacological effects 4. Indication 5. Side effects 6. Contra-indications 7. Drug interactions 8. Dosage 9. Routes of administration 10. Nursing implications 
  2. Anaesthetics – General anaesthetic agents – Inhalational e.g. halothane, isoflurane, nitrous oxide; Intravenous e.g. thiopentane sodium, ketamine; Local anaesthetic agents: lidocaine, bupivacaine, amethocaine. 

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  1. Tranquilizers – Major e.g. Phenothiazines (chlorpromazine), Butyrophenones (haloperidol) – Minor (Anxiolytics) e.g. Benzodiazepines (diazepam) – Tricyclic antidepressants e.g. amitriptyline, Mono-amine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) e.g. phenelzine; Anticholinergics e.g. atropine, hyoscine butylbromide. 
  2. Drugs acting on the cardiovascular system – Cardiac glycosides e.g. digoxin; Antihypertensives – Calcium channel blockers: nifedipine, Vasodilators: hydralazine, sodium nitroprusside, Adrenergic blocking agents: guanethidine, propranolol; Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACE Inhibitors): captopril, lisinopril, enalapril; Antiarrhythmic drugs: quinidine, lidocaine, disopyramide ; Antianginal drugs: nitroglycerine, isosorbide, nifedipine, aspirin; Vasoconstrictors: adrenaline, noradrenaline. 
  3. Anticoagulants: heparin, warfarin, aspirin; Antianaemics/haematinics: iron preparations, 

vitamins (B&C) and folic acid, erythropoietin. 

  1. Drugs acting on the urinary system – Diuretics: Carbonic anhydrase inhibitors: acetazolamide; Thiazides: bendrofluazide, hydrochlorothiazide; Loop diuretic: furosemide; Potassium-sparing: spironolactone; Osmotic diuretics: mannitol; Urinary antiseptics: nitrofurantoin, nalidixic acid, ciprofloxacin. 
  2. Eye preparations – Mydriatics: cyclopentolate, atropine, homoatropine; Myotics: pilocarpine, serine. Ear preparations – Anti-infectives: otosporin, tera-cortil, gentamycin ear drops, betnesol; Wax softeners: almond oil, sodium bicarbonate, olive oil, paraffin oil; Anti-fungal: locacortin, vioform, nystatin cream/drops. 
  3. Drugs acting on the endocrine system – Anti-diabetics: insulin, tolbutamide, metformin, glibenclamide (daonil), Anti-thyroids: thiouracil, carbimazole, thyroxine, Lugol’s iodine. Drugs used in obstetrics: Oxytocin and Tocolytics. 
  4. Pharmacovigilance – concept, rationale, role of the nurse. Diagnosis, management and 

reporting of adverse events. Prevention of adverse event. 

Methods of Instruction: 

  • Lectures 
  • Tutorials 
  • Discussion groups 
  • Guest lectures 
  • Projects (e.g. case studies, poster presentation, seminar presentation) 
  • Reading of articles from relevant scientific journals 

Methods of Course Assessment: Evaluation will be carried out in accordance with the university policy. The lecturer will present a written course outline with specific evaluation criteria at the beginning of the semester. Evaluation will be based on the following: 

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Criteria Marks 

Individual Works/Tasks 10 

Class Tests 10 

Class Assignments 10 

Final Examination 70 

TOTAL 100 

Pre-requisite course: Pharmacology, Therapeutics and Pharmacovigilance I 

Co-requisite course(s): None 

Recommended Reference Materials: Textbooks 

  1. Karen Whalen, et al (2019) Lippincott® Illustrated Reviews Pharmacology, 7th edition 2. Katzung Bertram G. (2018) Lange® Basic & Clinical Pharmacology, 14th edition 3. Hilal-Dandan Randa, Brunton Laurence L. (2013) Goodman & Gilman’s Manual of 

Pharmacology and Therapeutics, 2nd edition 4. Chekman Ivan, et al (2006) Pharmacology, 1st edition 5. Stefanov O., Kucher V. (2004) Pharmacology with General Prescription, 1st edition 


  1. Journal of Pharmacology and Pharmacotherapeutics 2. Journal of Experimental Pharmacology 3. Biomedical and Pharmacology Journal 

Web 1. 

  1. 3.

Please click on the course content tab to have access to all required materials for this course.

Legacy University COVID-19 Response

We wish you and your loved ones health and peace during these uncharted times. Our University remains open with the implementation of online classes for the 2020 academic year via our Legacy University Open eSchool (

For general question please email us at:, call (+220) 507-3964 or visit the university website -