OBJECTIVE: To describe the severity of adverse drug reactions as a factor in hospital admission of older patients, and to identify risk indicators for severe adverse drug reactions in these patients. DESIGN: Observational cross-sectional study. SETTING: Five wards in a university hospital in The Netherlands. SUBJECTS: Patients aged 70 and over admitted to general medical wards. METHODS: Use of statistical comparison and Kramer's algorithm. RESULTS: A severe adverse drug reaction was present in 25 (24%) of 106 patients. Thirteen patients (12%; 95% confidence interval 6.1-18.6%) were admitted probably because of an adverse drug reaction. Risk indicators for a severe adverse drug reaction were a fall before admission (odds ratio 51.3, P = 0.006), gastrointestinal bleeding or haematuria (odds ratio 19.8, P < 0.001) and the use of three or more drugs (odds ratio 9.8, P = 0.04). CONCLUSION: Adverse drug reactions are an important cause of hospital admissions in older people. A fall before admission may indicate a severe adverse drug reaction.

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Age and Ageing
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Mannesse, C.K, Derkx, F.H.M, de Ridder, M.A.J, Man in 't Veld, A.J, & van der Cammen, T.J.M. (2000). Contribution of adverse drug reactions to hospital admission of older patients. Age and Ageing. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/9275