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National Library of Medicine Technical BulletinNational Library of Medicine Technical Bulletin

Table of Contents: 2020 SEPTEMBER–OCTOBER No. 436


RxNorm September 2020 Release

RxNorm September 2020 Release. NLM Tech Bull. 2020 Sep-Oct;(436):b3.

2020 September 08 [posted]

The RxNorm September monthly release became available for download on Tuesday, September 8, 2020 and includes unique ISMP Tall Man lettering names. See below for more details and other RxNorm changes. 

RxNorm Data Changes

Unique ISMP Tall Man Lettering Names Added

Tall man lettering (TML) is an approach that uses uppercase lettering to help differentiate look-alike drug names by capitalizing dissimilar letters (e.g. CISplatin versus CARBOplatin). RxNorm previously used only the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) List of Established Drug Names Recommended to Use Tall Man Lettering (TML) which overlaps heavily with the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) List of Look-Alike Drug Names with Recommended Tall Man Letters. To provide more comprehensive TML medication names, the RxNorm September 2020 release includes unique ISMP TML names absent from the FDA list.

Brand Name OTC Cough/Cold/Flu Products with Two Ingredients Archived

Several years ago, RxNorm archived brand name over-the-counter (OTC) cold/cough/flu products with three or more ingredients. For the September release, OTC cold/cough/flu products with term types SBD or BPCK with two ingredients were archived. Impacted atoms were reassigned to generic names.

Notice of Upcoming RxNorm Data Changes

As a courtesy to users, this section provides advance notice of possible upcoming RxNorm data changes. More information about each change will be provided or repeated in the future. Please note that planned data changes and timelines may change if issues arise.

  • Reminder: Deleting UMLS Metathesaurus UMLSAUI & UMLSCUI in the RxNorm November 2020 Monthly Release
    • The Unified Medical Language System (UMLS) atom unique identifier (AUI) and concept unique identifier (CUI) will not exist in RxNorm beginning with the November 2020 release. In other words, the UMLSAUI and UMLSCUI attributes will be deleted from the RxNorm terminology in the RXNSAT.RRF file. Users can obtain the UMLSAUI and UMLSCUI directly from the Metathesaurus if needed.

Related News

NLM’s Pillbox Retires in January 2021

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) Pillbox program will be retired on January 29, 2021. See the following announcement for more information: https://www.nlm.nih.gov/pubs/techbull/ja20/ja20_pillbox_discontinue.html

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