Hospital use of acid-suppressive medications and its fall-out on prescribing in general practice: A 1-month survey

F. Parente, C. Cucino, S. Gallus, S. Bargiggia, S. Greco, L. Pastore, G. Bianchi Porro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Acid-suppressive medications are commonly used in hospitalized patients, but, to date, little is known about the overall use of these drugs in the hospital setting. Aim: To evaluate the appropriateness of acid-suppressive therapy in a large teaching hospital in northern Italy, and the fall-out of hospital prescription in general practice. Methods: The use of antisecretory agents was monitored for 1 month in adult patients consecutively admitted to L. Sacco University Hospital by reviewing their clinical charts. The appropriateness of each prescription was reviewed jointly by two consultant gastroenterologists. Results: A total of 46.8% of 799 hospitalized patients received acid-suppressive therapy. Ranitidine was the most frequently used drug (44.4%), followed by pantoprazole (31.8%) and omeprazole (23.0%). Stress ulcer prophylaxis and the prevention of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug-induced ulcer accounted for 60.4% of the indications for use. Overall, 68% of prescriptions were not appropriate as determined by consensus review; 56.4% of patients receiving unnecessary prophylactic treatment whilst in hospital were discharged on therapy, and 46% were still receiving the treatment 3 months later. Conclusions: Acid-suppressive agents are over-used in hospitalized patients. Most of the inappropriate hospital prescriptions are for ulcer prophylaxis in low-risk patients. This unnecessary use may also induce inappropriate drug consumption in general practice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1503-1506
Number of pages4
JournalAlimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Jun 15 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)


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