Potentially Inappropriately Prescribed Medications Among Medicare Medication Therapy Management Eligible Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease: an Observational Analysis

J Gen Intern Med. 2021 Aug;36(8):2346-2352. doi: 10.1007/s11606-020-06537-z. Epub 2021 Jan 27.


Background: Potentially inappropriately prescribed medications (PIPMs) among patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) may vary among clinical settings. Rates of PIPM are unknown among Medicare-enrolled Medication Therapy Management (MTM) eligible patients.

Objectives: Determine prevalence of PIPM among patients with CKD and evaluate characteristics of patients and providers associated with PIPM.

Design: An observational cross-sectional investigation of a Medicare insurance plan for the year 2018.

Patients: Medicare-enrolled MTM eligible patients with stage 3-5 CKD.

Main measures: PIPM was identified utilizing a tertiary database. Logistic regression assessed relationship between patient characteristics and PIPM.

Key results: Investigation included 3624 CKD patients: 2856 (79%), 548 (15%), and 220 (6%) patients with stage 3, 4, and 5 CKD, respectively. Among patients with stage 3, stage 4, and stage 5 CKD, 618, 430, and 151 were with at least one PIPM, respectively. Logistic regression revealed patients with stage 4 or 5 CKD had 7-14 times the odds of having a PIPM in comparison to patients with stage 3 disease (p < 0.001). Regression also found PIPM was associated with increasing number of years qualified for MTM (odds ratio (OR) 1.46-1.74, p ≤ 0.005), female gender (OR 1.25, p = 0.008), and increasing polypharmacy (OR 1.30-1.57, p ≤ 0.01). Approximately 14% of all medications (2879/21093) were considered PIPM. Majority of PIPMs (62%) were prescribed by physician primary care providers (PCPs). Medications with the greatest percentage of PIPM were spironolactone, canagliflozin, sitagliptin, levetiracetam, alendronate, pregabalin, pravastatin, fenofibrate, metformin, gabapentin, famotidine, celecoxib, naproxen, meloxicam, rosuvastatin, diclofenac, and ibuprofen.

Conclusion: Over one-third of Medicare MTM eligible patients with CKD presented with at least one PIPM. Worsening renal function, length of MTM eligibility, female gender, and polypharmacy were associated with having PIPM. Majority of PIPMs were prescribed by PCPs. Clinical decision support tools may be considered to potentially reduce PIPM among Medicare MTM-enrolled patients with CKD.

Keywords: Medicare; chronic kidney disease; medication therapy management; older adult.

Publication types

  • Observational Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Medicare Part D*
  • Medication Therapy Management
  • Polypharmacy
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic* / drug therapy
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic* / epidemiology
  • United States / epidemiology