PHPH D631: Medical Pharmacology


Medical Pharmacology is offered in the Spring semester of the M-II year. The overall objective of the course is to provide the minimum essential knowledge in pharmacology that every medical student trained as an undifferentiated physician must have prior to entering the clinical years of education. With the fund of knowledge gained through this course students should be prepared to approach pharmacotherapy as it applies to the practice of medicine in a rational manner and gain the requisite tools to continue to expand their knowledge in pharmacology as they advance in their clinical training.


The format for presenting the material is a combination of lectures, self-study [independent learning] with small group discussions, and case-study conferences. Lectures will concentrate on the pharmacology of a class of drugs. In covering each class of drugs the principles and knowledge objectives will focus on [i] mechanism[s] of action for both therapeutic and adverse effects of the drug[s] or drug classes, [ii] the pharmacokinetics of prototypic drugs within the class, [iii] clinical indications for the use of the drug[s] or drug classes, [iv] adverse effects of the drug[s] or drug classes, [v] contraindications, warnings, and precautions in the use of the drug[s] or drug classes, and [vi] drug-drug interactions.

The following topics are covered in the course.

  • General Principles
  • Autonomic Pharmacology
  • Renal Pharmacology
  • Autacoids / NSAIDs / Treatment of GI Disorders
  • Endocrine Pharmacology
  • CNS Pharmacology
  • Cardiovascular Pharmacology
  • Antimicrobial Chemotherapy
  • Toxicology
  • Anesthesia
  • Cancer Chemotherapy

Five sectional exams are given along with a comprehensive final. Material for these exams comes from each of the varied pedagogical formats and each exam focuses on assessing a student’s understanding, application, and integration of the material.


The recommended texts are either B.G. Katzung’s Basic and Clinical Pharmacology, Lange, 11th edition or Goodman and Gilman’s The Pharmacological Basis of Therapeutics, Hardman, et al., McGraw Hill, 11th edition. Texts are available to students online at the Acess Medicine Web site ( In addition, the students receive a course syllabus for each of the 5 sections.  All information contained within the syllabus, each faculty member’s slide presentations or notes, practice exams and other course materials are available on the Blackboard website.


Lectures are on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 8-10 AM and Friday from 9 AM to Noon in the MII classroom during the Spring semester.


Norman "Ted" Pedigo, Ph.D
Department of Pharmacology, Physiology & Neuroscience
SOM Campus, Building 1, Room D23
Phone: 803 216-3514


Registered students in this course may receive more detailed class nformation by accessing the following link: