Nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drug use among patients with GI bleeding.Ann Pharmacother. 2004 Jul-Aug; 38(7-8):1159-64.AP
Previous studies have suggested that recommended gastroprotective strategies such as gastroprotective agents (GPAs) and cyclooxygenase (COX) 2 inhibitors may be underutilized among individuals at risk for nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drug (NSAID)-related gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding.
To examine the use of traditional NSAIDs, COX-2 inhibitors, and GPAs among patients recently hospitalized for GI bleeding.
This was a retrospective cohort study of a national sample of 4338 veterans hospitalized for GI bleeding between January and June 1999. Prescription drug use was examined for 6 months following hospitalization. We examined relationships of subject characteristics (age, race, gender, geographic region, diagnosis of arthritis) to prescription of a high-risk NSAID, defined as a traditional NSAID but no GPA within 60 days before or after the NSAID.
Approximately 20% of subjects were prescribed an NSAID or COX-2 inhibitor, but only 5% were prescribed a traditional NSAID with no GPA. In a multivariable analysis, subjects <65 years of age and those with arthritis were more likely to be prescribed a traditional NSAID without a GPA. No other subject characteristics were related to receipt of a high-risk prescription.
In a national sample of veterans with a recent hospitalization for GI bleeding, high-risk NSAID prescriptions were uncommon. Underuse of gastroprotective strategies may be more common in patients with less recent GI bleeding-related hospitalization. Strategies to remind physicians and pharmacists to screen for GI risk factors may help to sustain appropriate prescribing and reduce NSAID-related adverse events.