I am a
Home I AM A Search Login

Papers of the Week

Papers: 11 Mar 2023 - 17 Mar 2023


Pharmacology/Drug Development

2023 Mar 03

Int J Environ Res Public Health




Over the Counter Pain Medications Used by Adults: A Need for Pharmacist Intervention.


Karłowicz-Bodalska K, Sauer N, Jonderko L, Wiela-Hojeńska A


The safety of pharmacotherapy for geriatric patients is an essential aspect of the demographic perspective in view of the increasing size of this population. Non-opioid analgesics (NOAs) are among the most popular and often overused over-the-counter medications (OTC). The reasons for drug abuse are common in the geriatric population: musculoskeletal disorders, colds, inflammation and pain of various origins. The popularity of self-medication and the ability to easily access OTC drugs outside the pharmacy creates the danger of their misuse and the incidence of adverse drug reactions (ADRs). The survey included 142 respondents aged 50-90 years. The relationship between the prevalence of ADRs and the NOAs used, age, presence of chronic diseases, and place of purchasing and obtaining information about the mentioned drugs were evaluated. The results of the observations were statistically analyzed using Statistica 13.3. The most commonly used NOAs among the elderly included paracetamol, acetylsalicylic acid (ASA) and ibuprofen. Patients consumed the medications for intractable headaches, toothaches, fevers, colds and joint disorders. Respondents indicated the pharmacy as the main location for purchasing medications, and the physician as the source of information for selecting the therapy. ADRs were reported most frequently to the physician, and less frequently to the pharmacist and nurse. More than one-third of respondents indicated that the physician during the consultation did not take a medical history and did not ask about concomitant diseases. It is necessary to extend pharmaceutical care to geriatric patients that includes advice on adverse drug reactions, especially drug interactions. Due to the popularity of self-medication, and the availability of NOAs, long-term measures should be taken to increase the role of pharmacists in providing effective, safe health care to seniors. We are targeting pharmacists with this survey to draw attention to the problem of the prevalence of selling NOAs to geriatric patients. Pharmacists should educate seniors about the possibility of ADRs and approach patients with polypragmasy and polypharmacy with caution. Pharmaceutical care is an essential aspect in the treatment of geriatric patients, which can contribute to better results in their existing treatment and increase the safety of medication intake. Therefore, it is important to improve the development of pharmaceutical care in Poland in order to enhance patient outcomes.