Results of chart reviews conducted to evaluate primary care patients seen by second and third year family medicine residents for potential adverse polypharmacy

  • Linda F. Chang
  • May N. Lutfiyya
  • Isaac Cha
  • Ehab El-Khabiry
Keywords: Polypharmacy, Aged, Drug Utilization Review, United States


Objective:  To determine the prescribing patterns of family medicine residents for patients  aged more than 60 years with 2 or more chronic diseases and seen at least twice in a 12 month timeframe.

Methods:  This is a descriptive analysis which was based on chart reviews. The setting was the University of Illinois-Rockford Family Practice Residency. Patients aged 60 years with 2 or more chronic diseases who were seen at least twice by second and third year residents.

Results:  Findings from this chart review include:  28.8% of the prescribed medications were not effective for the documented condition, 26.3% of the prescribed doses were incorrect, and 44.5% of the drugs prescribed were not the least expensive alternative.

Discussion: This preliminary study suggests a need for a focused intervention with family medicine residents regarding inappropriate polypharmacy issues with older patients.


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Original Research