CME Improved Management of Chronic Hyperkalemia in CKD

Researchers at Medscape Education (New York, New York), conduced an analysis to determine whether clinical knowledge, competence, and performance in the management of chronic hyperkalemia in patients with complex conditions could be improved with interactive, case-based online continuing medical education (CME). Results were reported by Amy Larkin, PharmD, CHCP, during the NKF 2020 Spring Clinical Meetings in a presentation titled Case-Bases, Interactive Medical Education Significantly Improves Management of Chronic Hyperkalemia in Complex Patients.

The instructional method included an online, case-based, interactive text activity. Nephrologists were given two patient cases, including multiple-choice knowledge or competence questions that allowed the clinician to make clinical decisions regarding treatment. The educational effect of the activity was measured using a four-question repeated pairs prior to and following the activity, and McNemar’s chi-squared test. Cramer’s V determined the effect size (<0.05, no effect; 0.06 to 0.15, small effect; 0.16 to 0.30, medium effect; and >0.30, large effect). The activity was launched May 15, 2019; data were collected through June 24, 2019.

There were significant overall improvements seen following participation in the CME activity (n=59; P=.003; V=0.156). There were improvements in specific areas: 8% of participating nephrologists improved at using a loop diuretic in patients where a low-potassium diet did not lower potassium levels (P=.05; V=0.179); 25% demonstrated improvement at prescribing a newer potassium binder in a patient with consistently elevated potassium level despite a low potassium diet and a loop diuretic; 10% improved at using a newer potassium binder in a patient on dialysis with hyperkalemia; and 36% reported increased confidence using potassium binders in patients on renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system inhibitors.

“This study demonstrates the success of an online, highly interactive, case-based educational interventions on improving knowledge, competence, and performance of nephrologists regarding complex management of chronic hyperkalemia,” the researchers said.

Source: Larkin A, Blatherwick D, Boutsalis G. Case-based, interactive medical education significantly improves management of chronic hyperkalemia in complex patients. Abstract of a presentation at the National Kidney Foundation 2020 Spring Clinical Meetings (Abstract #325).