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Drugs and falls in community-dwelling older people: a national veterans study.
Clin Ther. 2006 Apr; 28(4):619-30.CT

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

The aim of this study was to identify which specific medications within recognized major problematic drug categories that increase risk of falling were prescribed to veterans before their out-patient treatment for a fall.

METHODS

This was a retrospective, cross-sectional national secondary outpatient data analysis with an age- and sex-matched comparison group. The setting was the national Veterans Health Administration (VHA) ambulatory health care system in fiscal year (FY) 2004. The study population was VHA patients aged>or=65 years who had fall-related outpatient clinical health care encounters in FY 2004 (as indicated by diagnostic codes) and who received >or=1 outpatient medication during the study period. The age- and sex-matched comparison group consisted of an equal number of patients with nonspecific chest pain. The percentage of patients in each group receiving medications (at the time of the outpatient encounter) that affect the cardiovascular system (CVS), central nervous system (CNS), or musculoskeletal system (MSS) was compared with Bonferrom-adjusted P values.

RESULTS

The study sample consisted of 20,551 patients; the comparison group included the same number of patients. More patients with fall-coded encounters used CNS drugs than those with nonspecific chest pain (42.05% vs 29.29%). Also, within the CNS category, more patients with fall-coded encounters used antiparkinsonian medications (3.67% vs 1.32%), Alzheimer's disease medications (ie, cholinesterase inhibitors [5.40% vs 2.35%]), anticonvulsants/barbiturates (8.95% vs 5.18%), antidepressants (22.50% vs 14.16%), antipsychotics (4.68% vs 2.01%), opioid analgesics and narcotics (11.21% vs 9.09%), and benzodiazepines (7.60% vs 5.96%) (all, P<0.002). More patients with nonspecific chest pain received CVS drugs compared with the fall-coded group (69.13% vs 63.07%; P<0.002). Within the CVS category, more patients in the nonspecific chest pain group received angiotensin-II receptor antagonists, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, beta-blockers, calcium channel blockers, vasodilators, diuretics, and antiarrhythmics (all, P<0.002). No differences were noted between groups in the MSS category, except for NSAIDs, which more patients in the nonspecific chest pain group used than in the fall-coded group (6.44% vs 5.63%; P<0.002).

CONCLUSION

In this study, subjects with a health care encounter for a fall (as indicated by diagnostic code) were prescribed significantly more CNS-category medications than subjects in the age- and sex-matched comparison group.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Patient Safety Center, Veterans Integrated System Network 8, James A. Haley Hospital, and University of South Florida College of Public Health, Tampa, Florida 33612, USA. drddfrench@yahoo.comNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

Language

eng

PubMed ID

16750473

Citation

French, Dustin D., et al. "Drugs and Falls in Community-dwelling Older People: a National Veterans Study." Clinical Therapeutics, vol. 28, no. 4, 2006, pp. 619-30.
French DD, Campbell R, Spehar A, et al. Drugs and falls in community-dwelling older people: a national veterans study. Clin Ther. 2006;28(4):619-30.
French, D. D., Campbell, R., Spehar, A., Cunningham, F., Bulat, T., & Luther, S. L. (2006). Drugs and falls in community-dwelling older people: a national veterans study. Clinical Therapeutics, 28(4), 619-30.
French DD, et al. Drugs and Falls in Community-dwelling Older People: a National Veterans Study. Clin Ther. 2006;28(4):619-30. PubMed PMID: 16750473.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Drugs and falls in community-dwelling older people: a national veterans study. AU - French,Dustin D, AU - Campbell,Robert, AU - Spehar,Andrea, AU - Cunningham,Francesca, AU - Bulat,Tatjana, AU - Luther,Stephen L, PY - 2006/02/06/accepted PY - 2006/6/6/pubmed PY - 2006/6/23/medline PY - 2006/6/6/entrez SP - 619 EP - 30 JF - Clinical therapeutics JO - Clin Ther VL - 28 IS - 4 N2 - OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to identify which specific medications within recognized major problematic drug categories that increase risk of falling were prescribed to veterans before their out-patient treatment for a fall. METHODS: This was a retrospective, cross-sectional national secondary outpatient data analysis with an age- and sex-matched comparison group. The setting was the national Veterans Health Administration (VHA) ambulatory health care system in fiscal year (FY) 2004. The study population was VHA patients aged>or=65 years who had fall-related outpatient clinical health care encounters in FY 2004 (as indicated by diagnostic codes) and who received >or=1 outpatient medication during the study period. The age- and sex-matched comparison group consisted of an equal number of patients with nonspecific chest pain. The percentage of patients in each group receiving medications (at the time of the outpatient encounter) that affect the cardiovascular system (CVS), central nervous system (CNS), or musculoskeletal system (MSS) was compared with Bonferrom-adjusted P values. RESULTS: The study sample consisted of 20,551 patients; the comparison group included the same number of patients. More patients with fall-coded encounters used CNS drugs than those with nonspecific chest pain (42.05% vs 29.29%). Also, within the CNS category, more patients with fall-coded encounters used antiparkinsonian medications (3.67% vs 1.32%), Alzheimer's disease medications (ie, cholinesterase inhibitors [5.40% vs 2.35%]), anticonvulsants/barbiturates (8.95% vs 5.18%), antidepressants (22.50% vs 14.16%), antipsychotics (4.68% vs 2.01%), opioid analgesics and narcotics (11.21% vs 9.09%), and benzodiazepines (7.60% vs 5.96%) (all, P<0.002). More patients with nonspecific chest pain received CVS drugs compared with the fall-coded group (69.13% vs 63.07%; P<0.002). Within the CVS category, more patients in the nonspecific chest pain group received angiotensin-II receptor antagonists, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, beta-blockers, calcium channel blockers, vasodilators, diuretics, and antiarrhythmics (all, P<0.002). No differences were noted between groups in the MSS category, except for NSAIDs, which more patients in the nonspecific chest pain group used than in the fall-coded group (6.44% vs 5.63%; P<0.002). CONCLUSION: In this study, subjects with a health care encounter for a fall (as indicated by diagnostic code) were prescribed significantly more CNS-category medications than subjects in the age- and sex-matched comparison group. SN - 0149-2918 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/16750473/Drugs_and_falls_in_community_dwelling_older_people:_a_national_veterans_study_ L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0149-2918(06)00099-3 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -