Background: There is an increasing evidence of medicines related issues such as inappropriate prescribing among older people. Inappropriate prescribing is an important risk factor for adverse drug reactions and hospitalizations in the older people.
Objective: To assess and characterize the prevalence of Potentially Inappropriate Medications (PIMs) in nursing home care in Malaysia as defined by Screening Tool of Older Peoples Prescriptions (STOPP) and Beers criteria.
Setting: Four Nursing Homes situated in Penang, Malaysia.
Methods: A multicenter and cross-sectional study was conducted over 2 months period at four large non-governmental organizations nursing homes in Penang, Malaysia. The study population included older residents (≥65 years old) taking at least one medication. Residents who had been diagnosed with dementia or taking anti dementia drugs, delirium, too frail or refused to give consent were excluded. Demographic, clinical data and concurrent medications were collected through direct interview and also by reviewing medical records. STOPP and Beers criteria were applied in the medical review to screen for PIMs.
Main outcome measure: Potentially Inappropriate Medication using STOPP and Beers criteria.
Results: Two hundred eleven residents were included in the study with the median age of 77 (inter quartile range (IQR) 72-82) years. Median number of prescription medicines was 4 (IQR 1-14). STOPP identified less residents (50 residents, 23.7 %) being prescribed on PIMs compared with Beers criteria (69 residents, 32.7 %) (p < 0.001). There was a significant difference in the number of residents with PIMs detected by STOPP (23.7 %) and by Beers criteria (32.7 %), p < 0.001. The common identified PIMs by Beers criteria included nifedipine short acting, chlorpheniramine and diphenhydramine. The STOPP identified first generation antihistamines, duplication of drug classes, glibenclamide and anticholinergic agents. Higher number of medications (OR = 1.405 [1.193-1.654]; OR = 1.447 [1.215-1.723]) and longer stay at nursing home (OR = 1.132 [1.045-1.226]; OR = 1.133 [1.034-1.241]) were identified as predictors for both Beers and STOPP PIMs.
Conclusion: Potentially inappropriate medications are highly prevalent among older residents living in the nursing homes and are associated with number of medications and longer nursing home stay. Further research is warranted to study the impact of PIMs towards health related outcomes in these elderly.