Inappropriate Medications Use among Elderly Cancer Patients According to Beer’s Criteria

Main Article Content

Ahmad Al-Azayzih
Enas Bani Ahmad
Anan Jarab
Zelal Kharaba
Khalid A Al-Kubaisi

Keywords

cancer patients, Jordan, Potentially inappropriate medications (PIMs), Beer’s criteria, elderly

Abstract

Background: The global population of elderly has substantially increased in recent years due to heightened life expectancy and improved survival rates for numerous diseases, including cancer. Cancer treatment often entails complex regimens involving multiple medications. Additionally, advancing age is associated with a higher prevalence of co-morbidities, rendering older individuals more susceptible to inappropriate medications use and adverse drug events. Objective: We aimed in our study to examine the extent of Potentially Inappropriate Medications (PIMs) prescribing and factors associated with more PIMs instances in elderly cancer patients. Methods: The data of this study was evaluated utilizing medical records of included study subjects and was conducted over more than 3 years period (January 1, 2019 to January 31, 2022) at King Abdullah University Hospital, Al Ramtha, Jordan. Beer’s criteria 2019 was used to evaluate and identify the potentially inappropriate drugs prescribed and used among elderly cancer patients. Results: A total number of 250 geriatric cancer patients were included in this study. The mean age of the patients was 73.4 years. Males represented 50.4% of the total patients (n=126). The average number of medications reported was 10.7 medications. Eighty three percent (n=203) of patients had polypharmacy (prescribed at least five medications or more), A total of 179 medications were considered inappropriate according to the 2019 updated BEERS criteria and 71.6% of patients (n=179) received at least one PIM. The most common classes of PIMs were gastrointestinal medications (e.g., metoclopramide). Conclusion: According to this study, the incidence of PIMs in geriatric oncology practice is concerning, and extra consideration should be given to reduce any risks associated with this kind of prescribing in elderly cancer patients. Polypharmacy was found to be a major predictor of PIM prescription in this research.

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