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RxTerms File Structure

These are the fields and their description:

  1. RXCUI - the RxNorm unique identifier for the clinical drug, which can be one of the following term types:
    • Semantic Clinical Drug (SCD) e.g. Azithromycin 250 MG Oral Capsule.
    • Semantic Branded Drug (SBD) e.g. Azithromycin 250 MG Oral Capsule [Zithromax].
    • Branded Pack (BPCK) e.g. {6 (Azithromycin 250 MG Oral Tablet [Zithromax]) } Pack [Z-PAKS].
  2. GENERIC_RXCUI - this is the corresponding generic clinical drug for SBD and BPCK (null for SCD).
  3. TTY - term type in RxNorm.
  4. FULL_NAME - the full RxNorm name of the clinical drug.
  5. RXN_DOSE_FORM - dose form and intended route information from RxNorm.
  6. FULL_GENERIC_NAME - the generic part of the full RxNorm name.
  7. BRAND_NAME - the brand name part of the full RxNorm name (null for SCD). Brand names are in all uppercase to distinguish them from generic names.
  8. DISPLAY_NAME - drug name (either generic or brand name) and intended route e.g. INDERAL (Oral-pill).
  9. ROUTE - intended route derived from RXN_DOSE_FORM.
  10. NEW_DOSE_FORM - dose form derived from RXN_DOSE_FORM.
  11. STRENGTH - strength information parsed from the RxNorm full name.
  12. SUPPRESS_FOR - to flag drug names deemed not likely to be useful for data entry. For example, long generic drug names with multiple ingredients (e.g. Bacitracin/Hydrocortisone/Neomycin/Polymyxin B) are suppressed because they are almost always prescribed by their brand names (e.g. CORTISPORIN OINTMENT). Any non-null value means that a row should be suppressed.
  13. DISPLAY_NAME_SYNONYM - commonly used synonyms or abbreviations for the drug e.g. MOM for Milk of Magnesia.
  14. IS_RETIRED - to flag records that existed in earlier versions but not in the latest version.

The fields DISPLAY_NAME, DISPLAY_NAME_SYNONYM, NEW_DOSE_FORM and STRENGTH are probably the most useful. We advise you to exclude rows that are suppressed or retired (i.e. rows with non-null values in SUPPRESS_FOR or IS_RETIRED).

A sample of the data:

102166 197739 SBD Glycopyrrolate 2MG Oral Tablet [Robinul] Oral Tablet Glycopyrrolate 2 MG Oral Tablet ROBINUL ROBINUL (Oral-pill) Oral-pill Tabs 2 MG      
210886 253017 SBD Magnesium Hydroxide 80 MG/ML Oral Suspension [MILK OF MAGNESIA] Oral Suspension Magnesium Hydroxide 80 MG/ML Oral Suspension MILK OF MAGNESIA MILK OF MAGNESIA (Oral-liquid) Oral-liquid Susp 80 MG/ML   MOM  
103403   SCD Hydrocortisone 10 MG/ML Topical Lotion Topical Lotion Hydrocortisone 10 MG/ML Topical Lotion   Hydrocortisone (Topical) Topical Lotion 10 MG/ML      
197645   SCD Ergocalciferol 25000 UNT Oral Capsule Oral Capsule Ergocalciferol 25000 UNT Oral Capsule   Ergocalciferol (Oral-pill) Oral-pill Caps 25000 UNT   VITAMIN D; VIT-D  

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Last reviewed: 22 October 2008
Last updated: 22 October 2008
First published: 21 October 2008
Metadata| Permanence level: Permanent: Dynamic Content