Inappropriate Drug Use Criteria were established for the Elderly in Turkey

Board Member of the Association, Prof. Dr. In his written statement, Gülistan Bahat Öztürk stated that the elderly generally use a large number of drugs due to their many diseases, that the continuous use of more than 4 or 5 drugs per day is called “polypharmacy” and that the elderly people use many drugs as well as “unsuitable” drugs. He explained that its use is also common.

Pointing out that elderly individuals are more susceptible to drug side effects due to the changes that occur in the body with aging, Öztürk continued as follows:

In addition to physiological changes such as decrease in water ratio in the body, decrease in muscle mass, increase in fat ratio, decrease in kidney functions, falling, loss of balance, nutritional deficiency, decrease in muscle strength and mass, which we call sarcopenia, urinary incontinence and forgetfulness, The presence of ‘makes elderly people more sensitive about drug side effects.’ Considering the side effect of a drug that occurs in the patient as a new disease in elderly individuals, another drug is started to be used, this time a side effect related to this drug occurs; this situation is’ prescription cascade. Elderly individuals may be less able to adapt to drug use due to some problems such as forgetfulness and insufficient social support. Therefore, using the least number of drugs as possible would be an appropriate approach for elderly individuals. state of being We often see that there are drugs that are not used. In other words, proper drug selection and regulation of drug treatments is an important issue in elderly people. “

Öztürk pointed out that there is a need for rational drug use guidelines to guide healthcare professionals in Turkey due to the aforementioned reasons and said:

“Last year, under the leadership of geriatricians in the Rational Medicine Working group of the Academic Geriatrics Association, with the wide participation of experts and experienced faculty members in the field of elderly patients in Turkey (49 advisors from 12 different majors and 5 sub-branches of internal medicine, a total of 49 advisors and 23 working group lecturers. ) Turkey Inappropriate Drug Use Criteria (Turkish Inappropriate Medication Use in the Elderly; TIME Criteria) have been established. “

Öztürk, who lists the parts of the TIME criteria as “drugs that should not be used in elderly people or should be used with caution (TIME to STOP)” and “drugs that are beneficial to use in elderly people (TIME to START)”, Germany, Israel, Spain, England, Italy, Belgium, Czech Republic. and a group of lecturers from the Netherlands demonstrated the international validity of the TIME criteria and was presented to the world of science in the journal Drugs and Aging.

“Completely prepared for the use of healthcare professionals”

Stating that the criteria are also prepared as a mobile application, Öztürk gave the following information:

“The TIME criteria have been prepared entirely for the use of healthcare professionals. It should not be forgotten that the decision in the selection of drugs for treatment belongs to the responsible physician, the physician informs the patients and their relatives about the effect and side effects of the drug chosen. This set of criteria has been prepared to assist physicians and healthcare professionals. Patients should be followed up knowing the effects and side effects of the drug.It would be beneficial for elderly patients and their relatives to review their medications with their physicians with the help of TIME criteria. and their relatives should be aware of this issue.

TIME criteria have been presented as a resource that physicians can refer to. It has been prepared by considering the health conditions and characteristics of elderly individuals. The unrecognized and frequently encountered side effects of drugs, which are frequently encountered in the daily life of elderly individuals whose treatment is regulated or reviewed under the guidance of TIME criteria, will decrease. In this way, the quality of life of elderly people will increase, various side effects such as forgetfulness, falls, fractures, urinary incontinence, constipation that may be caused by inappropriate drug use will be reduced to the lowest possible level, and possible hospital stays and health expenses due to side effects will decrease.