Principles of Drug Prescribing in the Elderly

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Weerasak Muangpaisan


At the present time, the aging population is 10.5 % of the total population in Thailand and 10.5% of this figure are the persons aged 80 years or over. The increasing rate of elderly population in Thailand is much more than that of the developed countries up to 3 times. This problem will unavoidably cause health problems; one of which is the drug-related problem. Elderly people have physiologic changes, multiple pathologies and medical problems as well as polypharmacy which bring about adverse effects from the treatment. This article summarizes the physiologic changes from aging process causing clinical problems in drug prescribing. It also includes inappropriate drug prescribing, drug interaction, age associated adverse reaction, and behavioral factors of the elderly that cause problems in drug administration.

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