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Many elderly patients given multiple drugs will fall, suffer hip fracture and die, Dr Aseem Malhotra
Thursday, July 28, 2016 7:45 am Email this article
“It is the elderly who are most at risk of so-called polypharmacy - where a patient is taking multiple drugs.
“The problem with polypharmacy is that the more drugs you take, the more likely you are to experience side-effects that are then misinterpreted by a doctor or nurse as a symptom of disease that needs treating with additional medicine.
“I have lost count of the number of over-medicated elderly patients I have treated, with sometimes three or four blood pressure medications making them dizzy and fall over.
“It’s a vicious cycle and one that costs lives each year.
“The elderly are particularly vulnerable to polypharmacy with one in three hospital admissions in the over 75s the result of an adverse drug reaction.
“Many of these patients will fall and suffer a hip fracture because of medication side effects and a quarter of these will die as a result,” writes Dr. Aseem Malhotra, a London-based cardiologist, in a recent article in The Daily Mail.
Dr. Malhotra is one of six doctors warning about the influence of drug companies on the prescribing of drugs.
Dr. Malhotra launching the campaign
Dr. Malhotra, who is launching the campaign in a personal capacity, is a trustee of the King’s Fund health think tank, a member of the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges and advisor to the National Obesity Forum the article notes.
The six experts warning about too much medicine does more harm than good
These experts include: 1) Sir Richard Thompson, former-president of the Royal College of Physicians and personal doctor to England’s Queen for 21 years; 2) Dr. Aseem Malhotra, a London-based cardiologist; 3) Professor John Ashton, president of the Faculty of Public Health in Britain; 4) psychiatrist Dr. JS Bamrah, chairman of the British Association of Physicians of Indian Origin in Britain; 5) cardiologist Professor Rita Redberg, MD editor of medical journal JAMA Internal Medicine; 6) Professor James McCormack, a pharmaceutical scientist.
Hodgekiss A, and Spencer B. How Big Pharma greed is killing tens of thousands around the world: Patients are over-medicated and often given profitable drugs with ‘little proven benefits,’ leading doctors warn. The Daily Mail, 2016 Feb 23.
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