Potentially inappropriate medications (PIMs) in older hospital in-patients

prevalence, contribution to hospital admission and documentation of rationale for continuation

Danielle Ní Chróinín*, Hugo M. Neto, Diane Xiao, Anmol Sandhu, Carly Brazel, Nell Farnham, Jacinta Perram, Timothy S. Roach, Emily Sutherland, Ric Day, Alexander Beveridge

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)


Aim: To establish prevalence, sequelae and documentation of potentially inappropriate medication (PIM) use in older hospital in-patients. Methods: Notes of all patients ≥65 years old, admitted to our tertiary teaching hospital (January 2013), were retrospectively reviewed, and the Screening Tool of Older Persons' potentially inappropriate Prescriptions applied. Results: Amongst 534 patients, 54.8% (284) were on ≥1 PIM at admission, 26.8% on multiple; 60.8% were discharged on a PIM. Six percent of all admissions were potentially attributable to a PIM; falls associated with risk therapies were commonest (23/30), and often (65.2%) associated with serious injury. Pre-specified subgroup analysis (n = 100) identified 101 PIMs-at-discharge amongst 47 patients. In 82.2%, a clinical rationale for continued prescription was documented, with this communicated to the GP by letter in 71.1%. Conclusion: PIMs were common, and contributed to admission and injury. Hospitalisation provides an opportunity for medication rationalisation, and documentation of rationale for any PIM use.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)262-265
Number of pages4
JournalAustralasian Journal on Ageing
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • adverse drug event
  • drug prescription
  • inappropriate prescription
  • polypharmacy

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