Background Older people are more likely to be
exposed to polypharmacy. People
with dementia, especially those living
in residential aged care facilities
(RACFs), are at particularly high risk of
medication harm. We sought to describe
medications prescribed for a sample of
people with dementia living in RACFs.
Discussion People with dementia living in RACFs are
commonly exposed to polypharmacy.
Prescription of contraindicated
medications, antipsychotics, medications
with high anticholinergic burden, and
combinations of potentially inappropriate
mediations is also common. There
may be substantial scope to improve
prescribing for older people with
dementia living in RACFs.
Results Polypharmacy was identified in
91.2% (average 9.75 medications per
person); one-third were prescribed an
antipsychotic medication; and 50.4%
were found to be taking at least one
potentially inappropriate medication.
The combination of antipsychotics and
antidepressants was the most frequently
observed drug-drug interaction, being
prescribed to 15.7% of participants.
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