Pattern of Prescriptions among Elderly Diabetic- Hypertensive Patients in a Nigerian Teaching Hospital
A retrospective study was carried out from 2002 -2005 to describe the prescribing pattern among elderly diabetic-hypertensive patients in relation to their age and sex and to examine the existence of prescribed drugs considered potentially inappropriate for these elderly patients. Information such as age, sex religion and drugs prescribed were obtained using prescriptions contained in the patients case notes. Fifty (87.7%) of the case notes contained relevant information. Majority were females 33(66%) and mean age+SD was 66.28+8.107.A total of 1137 prescriptions were encountered with an average of 4.95 number of drugs. The study established no significant association between the gender and age(P= 0.8194),average number of repeat prescriptions(P=0.2656) and average number of drugs per prescription(P=0.5739) respectively. The most common therapeutic groups encountered in the case notes were anti-diabetics (100%), antihypertensives (100%) and Analgesics (96%). The most common potentially inappropriate medication encountered was amitriptyline 26(52%) followed by Nifedipine23(46%). The study indicates the presence of polypharmacy in prescribing patterns irrespective of age and sex and use of potentially inappropriate medications among this vulnerable group. However there was compliance to recommended treatment guidelines for diabetic hypertensive patients.
Keywords: Elderly, Diabetic-hypertensive, Prescription pattern, inappropriate medications