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Drug use patterns in a very elderly population: a seven-year review
National Board of Health and Welfare, Stockholm, Sweden.
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1999 (English)In: Clinical drug investigation, ISSN 1173-2563, Vol. 17, no 15, 389-98 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Objective: To determine the extent and rate of drug use and to evaluate the patterns of drug use over time in a very elderly population, we analysed drug use data from phases I (1987-1989) and IV (1994-1996) of the Kungsholmen project, an ongoing longitudinal study on aging in Stockholm, Sweden.Study Participants: Complete drug information was obtained from 1001 subjects in the 1987-1989 study period, and 681 subjects in 1994-1996. The participants were predominantly women and the average age was 85.8 years in 1987-1989 and 86.9 years in 1994-1996.Results: The proportion of users increased from 87.6 to 94.1% and the overall average number of drugs used per subject increased significantly (p < 0.001) from 3.4 to 4.6. Significant differences (p < 0.05) were noted in all age groups and in all types of housing. The frequency of use increased for all classes of drugs. The most frequently used in both study periods were drugs for the nervous system, cardiovascular system, and alimentary tract and metabolism. With regard to therapeutic categories of drugs, the use of vitamins, antithrombotic agents, antianaemic preparations, ACE inhibitors, antibacterials, analgesics, psychoanaleptics, and antiglaucoma preparations increased significantly (p < 0.05). The increased use of these drugs indicated heightened awareness of the most common and preventable medical conditions affecting the elderly and the use of newer classes of drugs. This also study confirmed a high prevalence of drug use and polypharmacy even in the very elderly, and the importance of evaluating the effects and appropriateness of drug use in this population.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
1999. Vol. 17, no 15, 389-98 p.
Keyword [en]
Elderly, Drug-utilisation, Pharmacoeconomics
National Category
Pharmaceutical Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-126492OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-126492DiVA: diva2:324496
Available from: 2010-06-15 Created: 2010-06-15 Last updated: 2010-06-15Bibliographically approved

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Claesson, Cecilia B
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