Self-administered Medication-Risk Questionnaire in an Elderly Population

Ann Pharmacother. Jul-Aug 2003;37(7-8):982-7. doi: 10.1345/aph.1C305.


Objective: To evaluate and validate a 10-item self-administered questionnaire for use by elderly patients to identify who is at increased risk of potentially experiencing a medication-related problem (MRP).

Methods: Forty participants aged >/=60 years who took >/=2 prescription drugs regularly completed the questionnaire. Data collection was based on patient interviews, review of pharmacy or medical records, and drug regimen reviews (DRRs). Outcome measures included feasibility, inter-rater reliability, test-retest reliability, internal consistency, and validity of the questionnaire. DRR severity scores were determined for each participant based on published guidelines for appropriate use.

Results: The questionnaire was easily administered to this group of older adults. Overall inter-rater reliability was high (r = 0.847). Nine of 10 individual questions matched well between the investigator and participants (kappa 0.4-0.6 for 3 questions; >0.6 for 6 questions). Test-retest reliability was significant for all 10 questions (kappa > 0.6). Internal consistency was acceptable (alpha = 0.69). DRR severity scores were correlated with questionnaire responses to determine validity. The number of yes answers correlated significantly with higher DRR severity scores (p < 0.001). Furthermore, 5 individual questions significantly correlated with DRR severity scores.

Conclusions: This study suggests that a self-administered questionnaire can be used in an older adult population to identify patients potentially at increased risk of MRPs. Clinicians in ambulatory care settings with similar patient populations can use a modified form of the questionnaire to screen for patients who should receive a medication review.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Observer Variation
  • Pharmacists
  • Prospective Studies
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Risk Assessment
  • Self Medication / adverse effects*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires