Anti-diabetic drug utilization patterns in a government hospital in Saudi Arabia
Purpose: To evaluate the prescription patterns of anti-diabetic drugs in a government hospital in Saudi Arabia.
Methods: Retrospective prescription information and medical records of patients who visited outpatient clinics during the last one year were used. The prescriptions were grouped into three: appropriate, partially appropriate and inappropriate. A total of 504 prescriptions were evaluated, while the male to female ratio was 3:1.
Results: The mean anti-diabetic drug per prescription was 2.08 ± 0.85. The most common prescriptions were metformin, sulfonylurea and insulin. More than two-thirds of the patients were on combination therapy. No prescriptions were found for thiazolidinediones, glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) analogues and α-glucosidase inhibitors. Metformin/sulfonylurea was the most common combination. The patients that received insulin with an oral agent accounted for 8 % of the total prescriptions. While 62 % of the patients reached fasting blood glucose goal of ≤ 126 mg/dl, there was no correlation between normoglycemia and total number of drugs, gender or age group. Moreover, age, sex, initial glucose concentration, and total drugs had no effect on final glucose levels.
Conclusion: Prescription patterns of anti-diabetic drugs are in accordance with international
guidelines but some shortcomings were observed probably due to poor prescription writing.
Keywords: Diabetes mellitus, Pharmacoepidemiology, Metformin, Interventions, Prescription