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Age- and gender-related differences in drug utilization patterns among patients in neurology ward of a tertiary care hospital

Debdipta Bose, Sushma M, Jagadish B Agadi.

Background: In most of Indian studies gender-specific prevalence rates for neurological disorders were found to be higher in men than women. Different studies revealed age-specific prevalence rates of various neurological disorders increases till fourth decade followed by decline to seventh decade.

Aims and Objectives: The present study was taken to evaluate age- and gender-based inequalities in the clinical diagnosis, comorbidities, and drug utilization patterns of patients admitted to the neurology ward.

Materials and Methods: The current study was a prospective cohort study. Case records of 200 patients over a period of January-December 2015 were reviewed. The demographic, clinical, and drug consumption data of the patients were evaluated based on age group (18-59 years vs. ≥60 years) and gender.

Results: A total of 200 patients were admitted to neurology wards during the study. Of 200 patients, 60% were males, and 18% were ≥60-year old. Consumption of antiepileptic drugs (AEDs), dopamine agonists, and antidepressants were found to be greater among patients aged >60 years (P < 0.05). Consumption of antiplatelets was significantly more among males, whereas utilization of vitamin was significantly among female (P < 0.05). The incidence of polypharmacy was noted significantly higher among elderly (P < 0.05). The duration of hospital stay was higher for elderly patients than patients aged between 18 and 59 years (P < 0.05).

Conclusion: Age-related differences were observed in utilization of AEDs, dopamine agonists, and antidepressants. Gender-related differences were observed in drug utilization of anti-platelets and vitamins. Age- and gender-related differences were observed in the occurrence of polypharmacy.

Key words: Age and Gender Differences; Drug Utilization Pattern; Neurology; Polypharmacy

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