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Elderly confused by medication

9th November 2006

14032006_PillPackets1s.jpgThe elderly are being left confused by their growing list of medications which is causing thousands of unnecessary hospital admissions.

Statistics show every decade adds a new medicine, but many patients do not know how to take what, when and whether it could interact with other pills to produce dangerous results. As the list increases so to do the chances of an adverse reaction.

As many as one in 10 hospital admissions is a result of the elderly having difficulty or wrongly taking their medicines.

By age 40, the average person will take 3.2 drugs, this increases to 7.5 at 70, 8.5 at 80 and 9.1 at 90. For every additional medicine, the risk of interactions rise.

Research suggests only around half of older people are taking their medication as intended.

Now Ask About Medicines Week is urging older people to ask more questions about the medicines they are given.


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