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close this bookEssential Drugs -Practical Guidelines (MSF, 1993, 286 p.)
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View the documentPharmaco-therapeutical index WHO essential drug list (7th list, 1992)
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Pharmaco-therapeutical index WHO essential drug list (7th list, 1992)

Anaesthetics.
Analgesics, antipyretics, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and drugs used to treat gout
Antiallergics and drugs used in anaphylaxis
Antidotes and other substances used in poisonings.
Antiepileptics
Anti-infective drugs
Antimigraine drugs.
Antineoplastic and immunosuppressive drugs.
Antiparkinsonism drugs
Blood, drugs affecting the
Blood products and plasma substitutes.
Cardiovascular drugs.
Dermatological drugs
Diagnostic agents.
Disinfectants and antiseptics
Diuretics
Gastrointestinal drugs
Hormones, other endocrine drugs, and contraceptives.
Immunologicals
Muscle relaxants (peripherally acting) and cholinesterase inhibitors
Ophthalmological preparations
Oxytocics and antioxytocics
Peritoneal dialysis solution.
Psychotherapeutic drugs
Respiratory tract, drugs acting on the
Solutions correcting water, electrolyte, and acid-base disturbances.
Vitamins and minerals.

Many drugs included in the list are preceded by a square symbol (*) to indicate that thney represent an example of a therapeutic group and that various drugs could serve as alternatives. It is imperative that this be understood when drugs are selected at national level, since choice is then influenced by the comparative cost and availability of equivalent products.

Numbers in parentheses after the drug names indicate:

(1) Drugs subject to international control under a) the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961,
b) the Convention on Psychotropic Substances, 1971 or c) the Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances, 1988.
(2) Specific expertise, diagnostic precision, or special equipment required for proper use.
(3) Greater potency or efficacy.
(4) In renal insufficiency, contra-indicated or dosage adjustments necessary.
(5) To improve compliance.
(6) Special pharmacokinetic properties for purpose.
(7) Adverse effects diminish benefit/risk ratio.
(8) Limited indications or narrow spectrum of activity.
(9) For epidural anaesthesia.

Letters in parentheses after the drug names indicate the reasons for the inclusion of complementary drugs:

(A) When drugs in the main list cannot be made available.
(B) When drugs in the main list are known to be ineffective or inappropriate for a given individual.
(C) For use in rare disorders or in exceptional circumstances.

1. Anaesthetics

1.1 GENERAL ANAESTHETICS AND OXYGEN
Diazepam (1b 2).
Ether, anaesthetic (2)
Halothane (2)
Ketamin (2)
Nitrous oxide (2)
*Thiopental (2)

1.2 LOCAL ANAESTHETICS
Bupivacaine (2,9)
*Lidocaine.

1.3 PREOPERATIVE MEDICATION
Atropine
Chloral hydrate
Diazeparn (1b)
*Morphine (1a)
Promethazine

2. Analgesics, antipyretics, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and drugs used to treat gout

2.1 NON-OPIOIDS
Acetylsalicylic acid.
Allopurinol (4)
Colchicine (7)
*Ibuprofen
*Indometacin.
Paracetamol

2.2 OPIOID ANALGESICS
*Codeine (1a)
*Morphine (1a)
*Pethidine (A) (1a, 4)

3. Antiallergics and drugs used in anaphylaxis

*Chlorphenamine
*Dexamethasone
Epinephrine
Hydrocortisone.
*Prednisolone

4. Antidotes and otHer substances used in poisonings

4.1 GENERAL
*Charcoal, activated
Ipecacuanha

4.2 SPECIFIC
Atropine
Deferoxamine
Dimercaprol (2)
*Methionine
Methylthioninium chloride (methylene blue)
Naloxone
Penicillamine (2)
Potassium ferric
hexacyanoferrate (II) - 2 H2O
(Prussian blue)
Sodium calcium edetate (2)
Sodium nitrite
Sodium thiosulfate

5. Antiepileptics

Carbamazepine
*Diazepam (1b)
Ethosuximide
Phenobarbital (1b)
Phenytoin
Valproic acid (7)

6. Anti-infective drugs

6.1 ANTHELMINTHIC DRUGS

6.1.1 Intestinal anthelminthics
Levamizole (B)
*Mebendazole
Niclosamide
Piperazine
Praziquantel
Pyrantel
Thiabendazole.

6.1.2 Specific anthelminthics
Albendazole

6.1.3 Antifilarials
Diethylcarbamazine
Ivermectin (D)
Suramin sodium (2, 7)

6.1.4 Antischistosomals
Metrifonate
Oxamniquine
Praziquantel

6.2 ANTIBACTERIALS

6.2.1 Penicillins
Amoxicillin (4)
Ampicillin (4)
Benzathine benzyl penicillin (5).
Benzylpenicillin
*Cloxacillin
Phenoxymethyl penicillin
*Piperacillin
Procaine benzylpenicillin

6.2.2 Other antibacterial drugs
*Chloramphenicol (7)
Ciprofloxacin (B)
Clindamycin (B)
Doxycycline (B) (5, 6)
*Erythromycin
*Gentamicin (2, 4, 7)
*Metronidazole
Nitrofurantoin (B) (4, 7)
Spectinomycin (8)
*Sulfadimidine (4)
*Sulfamethoxazole + trimethoprim (4)
*Tetracycline
Trimethoprim (B)

6.2.3 Antileprosy drugs
Clofazimine
Dapsone
Rifampicin

6.2.4 Antituberculosis drugs
Ethambutol (4)
Isoniazid
Pyrazinamide
Rifampicin
Rifampicin + isoniazide
Streptomycin (4)
Thioacetazone + isoniazide

6.3 ANTIFUNGAL DRUGS

Amphotericin B (4)
Flucytosine (B) (4,8)
Griseofulvin
*Ketoconazole (2)
Nystatin

6.4 ANTIPROTOZOAL DRUGS

6.4.1 Antiamoebic and antisriardiasis drugs
Chloroquine (B)
*Diloxanide
*Metronidazole.

6.4.2 Antileishmaniasis drugs
*Meglumine antimoniate
Pentamidine (5)

6.4.3 Antimalarial drugs

a) For curative treatment
*Chloroquine
Mefloquine (B)
Primaquine
Quinine
*Tetracycline (B)
*Sulfadoxine + pyrimethamine (B)

b) For prophylaxis
Chloroquine
Proguanil

6.4.4 Antitrypanosomal drugs

a) African trypanosomiasis
Eflomithine (C)
Melarsoprol (5)
Pentamidine (5)
Suramin sodium

b) American trypanosomiasis
Benznidazole (7)
Nifurtimox (2, 8)

6.5 lNSECT REPELLENTS
Diethyltoluamide

7. Antimigraine drugs

7.1 FOR TREATMENT OF ACUTE ATTACK
Acetylsalicylic acid
Ergotamine (7)
Paracetamol

7.2 PROPHYLAXIS
*Propranolol.

8. Antineoplastic and immunosuppressive drugs

8.1 IMMUNOSUPPRESSIVE DRUGS
*Azathioprine (2)
Ciclosporine (2)

8.2 CYTOTOXIC DRUGS
Bleomycin (2)
Calcium folinate (C) (2)
Cisplatin (2)
Cyclophosphamide (2)
Cytarabine (2)
Dacarbazine (2)
Dactinomycin (2)
*Doxorubicin (2)
Etoposide (2)
Fluorouracil (2)
Mercaptopurine (2)
Methotrexate (2)
Procarbazine
Vinblastine (2)
Vincristine (2)

8.3 HORMONES AND ANTIHORMONES
*Dexamethasone
*Ethinylestradiol
*Prednisolone
Tamoxifen

9. Antiparkinsonism drugs
*Biperiden
Levodopa + *Carbidopa (5, 6)

10. Blood, drugs affecting the

10.1 ANTIANAEMIA DRUGS
Ferrous salt
Perrous salt + folic acid.

10.1 ANTIANAEMIA DRUGS (SUITE)
Folic acid (2)
Hydroxocobalamin (2)
*Iron-dextran (B) (5)

10.2 ANTICOAGULANTS AND ANTAGONISTS
Desmopressin (8)
Heparin
Phytomenadione
Protamine sulfate
*Warfarin (2, 6)

11. Blood products and plasma substitutes

11.1 PLASMA SUBSTITUTES
*Dextran 70
*Polygeline

11.2 PLASMA FRACTIONS FOR SPECIFIC USES
Albumin, human (2, 8)
Factor IX complex (C) (2, 8)
Factor VIII concentrate (C) (2, 8)

12. Cardiovascular drugs

12.1 ANTIANGINALDRUGS
Glyceryl trinitrate
*Isosorbide dinitrate
*Nifedipine
*Propranolol

12.2 ANTIDYSRHYTHMIC DRUGS
Atenolol (B)
Lidocaine
*Procainamide (B)
*Propranolol
*Quinidine (A)
Verapamil (8)

12.3 ANTIHYPERTENSIVE DRUGS
*Captopryl (B)
*Hydralazine
*Hydrochlorothiazide
Methyldopa (B) (7)
*Nifedipine
*Propranolol
*Reserpine (A)
*Sodium nitroprusside (C) (2, 8)

12.4 CARDIAC GLYCOSIDES
Digitoxin (B) (6)
Digoxin (4)

12.5 DRUGS USED IN VASCULAR SHOCK
Dopamine

12.6 ANTITHROMBOTIC DRUGS
Acetylsalicylic acid
Streptokinase (C)

13. Dermatological drugs

13.1 ANTIFUNGAL DRUGS (TOPICAL)
Benzoic acid + salicylic acid.
*Miconazole
Nystatin
Selenium sulfide (C)

13.2 ANTI-INFECTIVE DRUGS
*Methylrosanilinium chloride (gentian violet).
Mupirocin
*Neomycin + *Bacitracin
Silver sulfadiazine

13.3 ANTI-lNFLAMMATORY AND ANTIPRURITIC DRUGS
*Betamethasone (3)
*Calamine lotion.
*Hydrocortisone.

13.4 ASTRINGENT DRUGS
Aluminium diacetate

13.5 KERATOPLASTIC AND KERATOLYTIC AGENTS
Benzoyl peroxide
Coal tar Dithranol
Fluorouracil
*Podophyllum resin (7)
Salicylic acid

13.6 SCABICIDES AND PEDICULICIDES
Benzyl benzoate
Permethrin

13.7 SUN BLOCKING AGENTS
Aminobenzoic acid, sun protection factor 15
*Benzophenones, sun protection factor 15
Zinc oxide (C)

14. Diagnostic agents

14.1 OPHTHALMIC DRUGS
Fluorescein
Tropicamide

14.2 RADIOCONTRAST MEDIA
*Amidotrizoate
Barium sulfate
*Iopanoic acid
*Iotroxate (C)
*Propyliodone

15. Disinfectants and antiseptics

15. 1 ANTISEPTICS
*Chlorhexidine
*Iodine
Hydrogen peroxide

12.2 DISINFECTANTS
Calcium hypochlorite
Glutaral, activated

16. Diuretics
*Amiloride (4, 7, 8)
*Furosemide
*Hydrochlorothiazide
Mannitol (C)
Spironolactone (C)

17. Gastrointestinal drugs

17.1 ANTACIDS AND OTHER ANTIULCER DRUGS
Aluminium hydroxide
*Cimetidine
Magnesium hydroxide

17.2 ANTIEMETIC DRUGS
Metoclopramide.
*Promethazine.

17.3 ANTIHAEMORRHOIDAL DRUGS
*Local anaesthetic, astringent, and anti-inflammaroty drug

17.4 ANTI-INFLAMMATORY DRUGS
Hydrocortisone
Sulfasalazine (2)

17.5 ANTISPASMODIC DRUGS
*Atropine

17.6 CATHARTIC DRUGS
*Senna

17.7 DIARRHOEA, DRUGS USED IN

17.7.1 Oral rehydration
Oral rehydration salts (for glucose-elctrolyte solution)
Sodium chloride 3.5 g/l
Potassium chloride 1.5 g/l
Trisodium atrate dihydrate 2.9 g/l
Glucose 20.0 g/l

17.7.2 Antidiarrhoeal (symptomatic) drugs
*Codeine (la)

18. Hormones, other endocrine drugs, and contraceptives

18.1 ADRENAL HORMONES AND SYNTHETIC SUBSTITUTES

*Dexamethasone
Fludrocortisone (C)
Hydrocortisone
*Prednisolone

18.2 ANDROGENS
Testosterone (C)

18.3 CONTRACEPTIVES

18.3.1 Hormonal contraceptives
Depot medroxyprogesterone acetate (B) (7,8)
*Ethinylestradiol + *Levonorgestrel
*Ethinylestradiol + *Norethisterone
*Norethisterone (B) (7,8)
Norethisterone enantate (B) (7,8)

18.3.2 Intrauterine devices
Copper-containing device

18.3.3 Barrier methods
Condoms with or without spermicide (nonoxinol)
Diaphragms wiht spermicide (nonoxinol)

18.4 ESTROGENS
*Ethinylestradiol

18.5 INSULINS AND OTHER ANTIDIABETIC AGENTS
Insulin injection (soluble)
Intermediate-acting insulin
*Tolbutamide

18.6 OVULATION INDUCERS
*Clomifene (C) (2,8)

18.7 PROGESTOGENS
Norethisterone

18.8 THYROID HORMONES AND ANTITHYROID DRUGS
Levothyroxine
Potassium iodide
*Propylthiouracil

19. Immunologicals

19.1 DIAGNOSTIC AGENTS
Tuberculin, purified protein derivative (PPD)

19.2 SERA AND IMMUNOGLOBULINS
Anti-D immunoglobulin (human)
Antirabies hyperimmune serum
Antiscorpion sera
Antitetanus immunoglobulin (human)
Antivenom sera
Diphtheria antitoxin
Immunoglobulin, human normal (2)
Tetanus antitoxin (equine)

19.3 VACCINES

19.3.1 For universal immunization
BCG vaccine (dried)
Diphtheria-pertussis-tetanus vaccine
Diphtheria-tetanus vaccine
Measles vaccine
Measles-mumps-rubella vaccine
Poliomyelitis vaccine (inactivated)
Poliomyelitis vaccine (live attenuated)
Tetanus vaccine

19.3.2 For specific groups of individuals
Hepatitis B vaccine
Influenza vaccine
Meningococcal vaccine
Rabies vaccine
Rubella vaccine
Typhoid vaccine
Yellow fever vaccine

20. Muscle relaxants (peripherally acting) ard cholinesterase inhibitors
*Gallamine (2)
*Neostigmine
Pyridostigmine (B) (2, 8)
Suxamethonium (2)
Vecuronium (C)

21. Ophthalmological preparations

21.1 ANTIINFECTIVE AGENTS
Gentamicin
*Idoxuridine
Silver nitrate
*Tetracycline.

21.2 ANTIINFLAMMATORY AGENTS
Prednisolone

21.3 LOCAL ANAESTHETICS
*Tacaine

21.4 MIOTICS AND ANTIGLAUCOMA DRUGS
Acetazolamide
*Pilocarnine
*Timolol

21.5 MYDRIATICS
Atropine
Epinephrine (A)

22. Oxytocics and antioxytocics

22.1 OXYTOCICS
*Ergometrine
Oxytocin

22.2 ANTIOXYTOCICS
*Salbutamol (2)

23. Peritoneal dialysis solution
Intraperitoneal dialysis solution (of appropriate composition)

24. Psychotherapeutic drugs
*Amitriptyline
*Chlorpromazine
*Diazepam (1b)
*Fluphenazine (5)
*Haloperidol
Lithium carbonate (2, 4)

25. Respiratory tract, drugs acting on the

25.1 ANTIASTHMATIC DRUGS
Aminophylline (2)
Beclometasone

25.1 ANTIASTHMATIC DRUGS (SUITE)
*Cromoglicic acid (B)
Ephedrine (A)
Epinephrine
Salbutamol

25.2 ANTITUSSIVES
*Codeine (1a)

26. Solutions correcting water, electrolyte and acid-base disturbances

26.1 ORAL REHYDRATION
Oral rehydration salts (for glucose-electrolyte solution).
Potassium chloride

26.2 PARENTERAL
*Compound solution of sodium lactate
Glucose
Glucose with sodium chloride
Potassium chloride (2)
Sodium bicarbonate
Sodium chloride

26.3 MISCELLANEOUS
Water for injection

27. Vitamins and minerals
Ascorbic acid (C)
Calcium gluconate (C) (2, 8)
*Ergocalciferol
Iodine (8)
*Nicotinamide
Pyridoxine
Retinol
Riboflavin
Sodium fluoride (8)
Thiamine