Elderly people are at a greater risk for adverse drug reactions (ADRs) because of the metabolic changes and reduced drug clearance associated with ageing; this risk is furthermore exacerbated by increasing the number of drugs used. Potential of drug-drug interactions is further increased by use of multiple drugs.
Taking lots of medications for multiple chronic conditions, increases the risk of harmful effects because of: Drug-drug interactions: medications may have unpredictable effects when they interact with each other. Drug-disease interactions: medications may have unpredictable effects on another disease a person has.
Drug-related problems are common in older adults and include drug ineffectiveness, adverse drug effects, overdosage, underdosage, inappropriate treatment, inadequate monitoring, nonadherence, and drug interactions. (See also Overview of Drug Therapy in Older Adults.
Unfortunately, there are many negative consequences associated with polypharmacy., Specifically, the burden of taking multiple medications has been associated with greater health care costs and an increased risk of adverse drug events (ADEs), drug-interactions, medication non-adherence, reduced functional capacity and
Dangerous drug interactions, which may produce new side effects not typically associated with either medication. Diminished effectiveness of one medication due to the metabolic action another medication. Confusion with regard to medication use, resulting in missed doses, extra doses, or other errors.
There are several risks when taking multiple medicines. You may be more likely to have side effects. Because most medicines can have side effects, the more medicines you take, the more likely you will have side effects. Taking certain medicines can also increase the risk for falls.
Memory: Senior simply forget to take their medications. Need: 40% of elderly patients do not know the purpose of their medication. Some do not take them because they don’t feel good, others stop taking because they feel good. Volume: too many medications.
Some types of medication-related problems include:
The elderly population is at great risk for medication-related problems as a result of age-related physiological changes, the presence of multiple chronic diseases and conditions, and the types and numbers of prescription and nonprescription medications they consume.
Polypharmacy is an area of concern for elderly because of several reasons. Elderly people are at a greater risk for adverse drug reactions (ADRs) because of the metabolic changes and reduced drug clearance associated with ageing; this risk is furthermore exacerbated by increasing the number of drugs used.
As we age, physiological changes can affect the way our body metabolises drugs, causing adverse reactions. Older people are more likely to be taking multiple medications (‘polypharmacy’), which increases the risk of medications being implicated in hospital admissions.
The statistics on medication usage among elderly patients in the US are eye-opening: more than one-third of prescriptions drugs used in the US are taken by elderly patients; the ambulatory elderly fill between 9-13 prescriptions a year (including new prescriptions and refills); the average elderly patient is taking
The use of multiple medicines, commonly referred to as polypharmacy is common in the older population with multimorbidity, as one or more medicines may be used to treat each condition.
Some common examples mild adverse effects related to drugs include: