Since 1991 there has been a group of geriatricians and other physicians identifying medicines that might be inappropriate in people over age 65. Dr. Mark Beers originally led this group, so it is called the ‘Beers Criteria’. This list has been updated every few years. The most recent update was this month.
The medications on this list have SAFER and/or MORE EFFECTIVE options available.
Some of the reasons for medications to make the list include:
- blood pressure lowering medicines that cause more dizziness and falls than other options
- medicines with anticholinergic (very drying) effects that can have several negative effects including worsening memory
- anxiety medicines that cause thinking/memory problems and falls
- depression medicines that cause several problems
- allergy medicines that cause drowsiness, driving accidents, and falls
- medicines that are cleared from the body through the kidneys which slow down with age
- medicines that are cleared from the body through the liver which can slow down with age
- medicines that are ok at low doses but dangerous at high doses
- medicines that can cause delirium
- medicines that can worsen memory
- medicines that can cause constipation
- medicines that can make urination with prostate enlargement even more difficult
This year, for the first time, guidelines for safer options to replace these dangerous medicines were written. This is exciting news!
If you are over 65, please talk with your prescribers about these lists of potentially inappropriate medicines and these lists of safe alternatives.
For a personal evaluation of your medicines, please contact us at www.medsmash.com.
For further application, check out my personal blog.