Variability in the prescription of cardiovascular medications in older patients: correlates and potential explanations.

Cinzia Maraldi, Fabrizia Lattanzio, Graziano Onder, Massimo Gallerani, Silvia Bustacchini, Giuseppe De Tommaso, Stefano Volpato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In western countries approximately a quarter of the population is 65 years and older. People in this age group often have several coexisting medical problems and take multiple drugs, and older people receive the greatest proportion of dispensed prescriptions. The prevalence of cardiovascular diseases, the leading cause of death and a major cause of physical and cognitive disability, increases steeply with increasing age. Drugs for the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular conditions account for a large proportion of medication prescription in older persons. Despite a number of published guidelines and expert recommendations supporting a standardized use of many cardiovascular agents, there is growing evidence of a tremendous variability in cardiovascular drug prescriptions according to demographics, health characteristics, and setting of care. In particular, evidence shows an inverse relationship between treatment propensity and age. To date, there is little evidence of benefit of most pharmacotherapy in frail, older subjects or elderly individuals with multiple comorbidities and polypharmacotherapy. However, effective treatment should not be denied solely on the basis of age. A major challenge in geriatric practice is to ensure safe and effective pharmacological treatments, avoiding the risk of polypharmacy and inappropriate drug prescription.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-51
Number of pages11
JournalDrugs and Aging
Volume26 Suppl 1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2009

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Prescriptions
Drug Prescriptions
Cardiovascular Agents
Inappropriate Prescribing
Polypharmacy
Therapeutics
Geriatrics
Pharmaceutical Preparations
Comorbidity
Cause of Death
Cardiovascular Diseases
Age Groups
Demography
Pharmacology
Guidelines
Drug Therapy
Health
Population

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

Cite this

Variability in the prescription of cardiovascular medications in older patients : correlates and potential explanations. / Maraldi, Cinzia; Lattanzio, Fabrizia; Onder, Graziano; Gallerani, Massimo; Bustacchini, Silvia; De Tommaso, Giuseppe; Volpato, Stefano.

In: Drugs and Aging, Vol. 26 Suppl 1, 01.12.2009, p. 41-51.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Maraldi, Cinzia ; Lattanzio, Fabrizia ; Onder, Graziano ; Gallerani, Massimo ; Bustacchini, Silvia ; De Tommaso, Giuseppe ; Volpato, Stefano. / Variability in the prescription of cardiovascular medications in older patients : correlates and potential explanations. In: Drugs and Aging. 2009 ; Vol. 26 Suppl 1. pp. 41-51.
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