Newswise — Older adults newly admitted to nursing homes with high rates of antipsychotic prescribing in the previous year are more likely to receive antipsychotic agents, according to a report in the January 11 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. Of these treated patients, some had no identified clinical indication for this therapy.
In 2007, almost one-third of U.S. nursing home residents received antipsychotic drugs, according to background information in the article. Safety concerns regarding their use are increasing; in 2005, the Food and Drug Administration issued warnings regarding the risk of death among older adults with dementia taking these agents to control behavioral symptoms. A large clinical trial recently concluded that the adverse effects of atypical antipsychotic drugs outweighed the benefits in patients with Alzheimer’s disease.
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