Peer Reviewed

1

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1-1-2014

Keywords

Aged, Aged, 80 and Over, Cross-Sectional Studies, Female, Great Britain, Humans, Inappropriate Prescribing, Male, Prospective Studies, Retrospective Studies

Funder/Sponsor

The Health Research Board, Ireland, provided financial support for this study: grant reference HRC-2007-1.

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Potentially inappropriate prescribing (PIP) in older people is associated with increases in morbidity, hospitalisation and mortality. The objective of this study was to estimate the prevalence of and factors associated with PIP, among those aged ≥70 years, in the United Kingdom, using a comprehensive set of prescribing indicators and comparing these to estimates obtained from a truncated set of the same indicators.

METHODS: A retrospective cross-sectional study was carried out in the UK Clinical Practice Research Datalink (CPRD), in 2007. Participants included those aged ≥ 70 years, in CPRD. Fifty-two PIP indicators from the Screening Tool of Older Persons Potentially Inappropriate Prescriptions (STOPP) criteria were applied to data on prescribed drugs and clinical diagnoses. Overall prevalence of PIP and prevalence according to individual STOPP criteria were estimated. The relationship between PIP and polypharmacy (≥4 medications), comorbidity, age, and gender was examined. A truncated, subset of 28 STOPP criteria that were used in two previous studies, were further applied to the data to facilitate comparison.

RESULTS: Using 52 indicators, the overall prevalence of PIP in the study population (n = 1,019,491) was 29%. The most common examples of PIP were therapeutic duplication (11.9%), followed by use of aspirin with no indication (11.3%) and inappropriate use of proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) (3.7%). PIP was strongly associated with polypharmacy (Odds Ratio 18.2, 95% Confidence Intervals, 18.0-18.4, P < 0.05). PIP was more common in those aged 70-74 years vs. 85 years or more and in males. Application of the smaller subset of the STOPP criteria resulted in a lower PIP prevalence at 14.9% (95% CIs 14.8-14.9%) (n = 151,598). The most common PIP issues identified with this subset were use of PPIs at maximum dose for > 8 weeks, NSAIDs for > 3 months, and use of long-term neuroleptics.

CONCLUSIONS: PIP was prevalent in the UK and increased with polypharmacy. Application of the comprehensive set of STOPP criteria allowed more accurate estimation of PIP compared to the subset of criteria used in previous studies. These findings may provide a focus for targeted interventions to reduce PIP.

Disciplines

Medicine and Health Sciences

Citation

Bradley MC, Motterlini N, Padmanabhan S, Cahir C, Williams T, Fahey T, Hughes CM. Potentially inappropriate prescribing among older people in the United Kingdom. BMC Geriatrics. 2014;14:72.

PubMed ID

24919523

DOI Link

10.1186/1471-2318-14-72

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.

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