RxMix Tutorial


RxMix is an interface for building applications that allows users to combine functions of the RxNorm, RxTerms, RxClass, and Interaction APIs. RxMix offers several notable features:
  • Function composition. The RxMix interface allows the user to build a workflow of API functions to execute. This saves the user from having to write complex programs to handle multiple function calls. Examples of function composition are contained in the examples below.
  • Batch processing. Through the user interface, RxMix allows the user to process large amounts of data through the user defined workflow. The user can provide a file containing a list of inputs, such as drug names or drug identifiers, for input to the workflow. RxMix will execute the workflow and offer the results as a zip file.
  • Text output. RxMix formats output as bar-delimited text that can be imported into a spreadsheet.
  • Interactive mode. RxMix allows users to interactively test and display the results of the workflow on a single input value.

Users of the RxMix interface should be familiar with the RxNorm, RxClass, Interaction, and/or the RxTerms API functions.

RxMix video tutorials: Batch example

A Simple Example

This example illustrates the basic operations of the RxMix interface. In this example, we will build a workflow containing two functions in order to display concept information associated with a National Drug Code (NDC).

The figure below shows the initial RxMix page.

The main panel is divided up into eight sections.
  • Workflow is where the workflow is displayed. The workflow can be loaded from a file or built using the "Select Funtion" menu.
  • Build is where the workflow can be constructed by allowing users to select API functions and add them to build a workflow.
  • Load is where workflows can be imported into RxMix. The "FROM WORKFLOW LIBRARY" button allows the user to select one workflow from a library of common use cases. The "FROM MY WORKFLOWS" button allows the user to select a previously saved workflow.
  • Input is where the user specifies the input values needed to run the workflow. The Batch tab allows the user to run batch jobs on the workflow.
  • Output (left side) is where the user specifies the output type (TEXT or TABLE), and the output filters.
  • Execute contains buttons that allows the user the clear, save or run (interactively) the workflow.
  • Documentation contains the descriptions of the functions and the parameters in the APIs used in the workflows
  • Output (below documentation) contains the results of the interactive run.

To define a workflow, first click on the arrow at the right side of the box under Select Function, and a menu of the available functions will be displayed like the figure below.

The menu of available functions shows the API (RxNorm, RxTerms, RxClass, or Interaction) type and the names for each available function.

Scroll down to the RxNorm API functions and select the RxNorm API function findRxcuiById. The build area is changed to the figure below.

The findRxcuiById function needs three parameters. The identifier will be specified in the input data section. The other parameters, id_string and allSourcesFlag, are specified in the build area. RxMix provides a default value for these fields.
Note: The documentation for a selected function can be viewed by positioning the cursor over the help icon .

Select NDC as the id_string value. Leave the allSourcesFlag parameter as 0. Click the Add to Workflow button to add the function to the workflow. The workflow area is changed to the figure below.

Notice that a Remove Last button has appeared below the workflow diagram. This allows the last function in the workflow to be removed.

The next step is to add the second function to the workflow. From the function menu under RxNorm, select getRxConceptProperties.

Then click on the Add to Workflow button. The workflow is changed to the figure below.

The next step is to add the input data. The input for this workflow needs an NDC. Type in 63323-292-80 in the input box.

The Output Filter lists the fields to be included in the output. Unselect the UMLSCUI item.

Now click on the Run Interactive button in the EXECUTE section to start the processing. The results will be shown as a table (the output format selected) in the Output area.

Congratulations, you have created and run your first workflow in RxMix.

The next example will demonstrate the use of batch processing in RxMix. View the batch example.