Many medications for elderly are prescribed inappropriately

Approximately one in five prescriptions to elderly people is inappropriate, according to a study published Aug. 22 in the open access journal PLOS ONE.

The authors of the study, led by Dedan Opondo of the Academic Medical Center in Amsterdam, conducted a systematic review of English-language studies of medication use in the elderly and found that the median rate of inappropriate prescriptions was 20.5%.

Some of the medications with the highest rates of inappropriate use were the antihistamine diphenhydramine, the antidepressant amitriptyline, and the pain reliever .

More information: Opondo D, Eslami S, Visscher S, de Rooij SE, Verheij R, et al. (2012) Inappropriateness of Medication Prescriptions to Elderly Patients in the Primary Care Setting: A Systematic Review. PLoS ONE 7(8): e43617. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0043617

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Tips to prevent adverse drug events in older adults

Jan 02, 2008

Adverse drug events are more common in older adults because they are prescribed more drugs and are effected differently by these drugs than their younger counterparts. A review article written by Tufts University School of ...

Recommended for you

Study recalculates costs of combination vaccines

Apr 17, 2014

One of the most popular vaccine brands for children may not be the most cost-effective choice. And doctors may be overlooking some cost factors when choosing vaccines, driving the market toward what is actually a more expensive ...

Drug watchdog urges vigilance in cancer drug theft

Apr 17, 2014

Europe's medicine watchdog urged doctors Thursday to be vigilant in administering the cancer drug Herceptin, vials of which had been stolen in Italy and tampered with before being sold back into the supply chain.

User comments