Most seniors can't name drugs prescribed during hospital stays

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Nearly 9 in 10 hospitalized seniors could not name a single take-as-needed medication prescribed during a hospital stay, according to a recent study.

Researchers at the University of Colorado Hospital Acute Care for the Elderly Service surveyed adult patients aged 21 to 89. They discovered that a total of 88% of hospitalized seniors could not recall any medications they had been prescribed. Among the total group, 96% of patients could not remember any medications they had been prescribed. Patients were given a list of medications and asked to check which ones had been prescribed. That list was then compared to actual prescription records. Antibiotics, cardiovascular medications and antithrombotics were the most commonly omitted medications on the checklist, according to the report.

More patient involvement in medication is needed to prevent adverse reactions, such as an overlooked allergy to antibiotics, according to researchers. The problem is especially pronounced in older and cognitively impaired patients, they say. The study appears in the Dec. 10 edition of the Journal of Hospital Medicine.


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