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Fewer Emergency Hospitalizations for Adverse Drug Events in Older Americans

New England Journal of Medicine 2011;365:2002-12.

 

Daniel S. Budnitz, M.D., M.P.H., Maribeth C. Lovegrove, M.P.H.,

Nadine Shehab, Pharm.D., M.P.H., and Chesley L. Richards, M.D., M.P.H.

 

 

Background: Adverse drug events are important preventable causes of hospitalization in older adults. However, nationally representative data on adverse drug events that result in hospitalization in this population have been limited.

 

Results: Warfarin was implicated alone or in combination in 33.3% of hospitalizations due to adverse drug events, the highest incidence of any drug studied.

 

Conclusions: Most emergency hospitalizations for recognized adverse drug events in older adults resulted from a few commonly used medications, and relatively few resulted from medications typically designated as high-risk or inappropriate. Improved management of antithrombotic and antidiabetic drugs has the potential to reduce hospitalizations for adverse drug events in older adults.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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