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Reducing Senior Medications

November 11, 2014

Over the past few decades the medical management of our elderly has included prescribing multiple drugs for a host of reasons. This has resulted in frequent adverse drug reactions, some of them life threatening.

A recent pilot study examined the possibility of reducing or eliminating some of the drugs taken by older patients in an effort to provide a better quality of life and reduce the potential for adverse reactions. The study, “participants were aged 80 ± 11 years and were taking 9 ± 2 medications.” Of those, “fifteen participants commenced medication withdrawal and all ceased or reduced the dose of their target medication.”

If you have an elderly loved one who is taking multiple drugs, ask their provider about an effort to reduce/eliminate the amount of drugs they are taking and what else they could be doing to maximize their health.

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One Response to “ Reducing Senior Medications ”

  1. Mary Scott RPH on November 11, 2014 at 6:11 pm

    I am a senior care pharmacist who has been a consultant pharmacist to various nursing facilities. If individuals are concerned about their parent taking what they think are too many meds, and experiencing symptoms of dementia, they can google senior care pharmacist or check out the American Society of Consultant Pharmacists website (www.ascp.com) to find a senior care pharmacist in their area. They can then meet with the pharmacist and go over their meds. I have helped many elderly residents stay in their home and avoid having to move to a nursing facility. By eliminating unnecessary meds,duplicative therapy and meds that are inappropriate for people over 65 yrs of age, a person’s quality of life can be enhanced.

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