Renal: Learning outcomes

Last updated: Thursday, August 09, 2018

After completing this tutorial, you will be able to:
  • Make decisions about appropriate choice and dose of medicines in patients with renal impairment.
  • Assess and calculate renal function.
  • Describe the main types of renal replacement therapy and how they may affect drug therapy.
  • Explain three basic mechanisms by which medicines may adversely affect the kidney.

You can download a PDF of the whole tutorial (without interactive elements such as Learning Exercises) and a one-page summary of key points.

You should allow 90 minutes to complete this tutorial, including Learning Exercises.


This tutorial is aimed at hospital pre-registration pharmacists, and will help you achieve GPhC performance standards such as these:
  • A3  Manage problems.
  • B1.4  Elicit all relevant information by the use of appropriate questions.
  • C1.5  Perform calculations correctly. 
  • C2.3  Identify and take action to minimise risk to patients from their treatment.
  • C2.4  Actively provide information and advice to healthcare professionals.

If you are a foundation pharmacist, this tutorial may help you meet competencies from the RPS framework including:
  • 1.4  Selection of the medicine: medicine-disease interactions.
  • 1.5  Medicine specific issues: selection of dosing regimen.
  • 1.7  Monitoring medicine therapy
  • 3.3  Analysing information
  • 3.4  Providing information

Continuing professional development

Finally, here are some CPD activities you could consider:

★  If you make a clinical recommendation about the safety of a medicine in renal disease or advise adjusting a dose because of it, write up what you did as a reflective account. How did you decide what to do? Was your advice accepted? What might have happened to the patient if your advice had not been accepted?
★  Can you plan to visit a renal unit or haemodialysis centre in your area? If so, think about the questions you want to ask before you go and document what you learned.
★  Talk to a more experienced colleague about any interventions you've made involving patients with renal impairment. Were you able to answer the questions posed by your colleague? Were you given any pointers on how to improve?