Appropriate pharmacotherapy at the end of life: Prescribing safely and only what is needed as part of whole‑person care

Małgorzata Krajnik, David C. Currow, Piotr Sobański

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Most patients with chronic progressive diseases are treated with several drugs to modify their life-limiting illness(es), if still possible, and to relieve any symptoms caused by it (them). According to a European survey, patients with advanced cancer who are taking opioids for moderate or severe pain are given 7.8 medications on average, and approximately 45% of patients receive unnecessary or potentially unnecessary drugs. Polypharmacy defined either by the use of 5 or more medications (including over-the-counter medicines) or by the inappropriateness of the prescription raises risks of serious adverse effects and drug–drug interactions (DDIs).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)654-656
Number of pages3
JournalPolish Archives of Internal Medicine
Volume129
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 30 Oct 2019
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution‑NonCommercial‑ShareAlike 4.0 International License (CC BY‑NC‑SA 4.0), allowing third parties to copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format and to remix, transform, and build upon the material, provided the original work is properly cited, distributed under the same license, and used for non-commercial purposes only.

Keywords

  • chronic progressive diseases
  • life-limiting illness
  • cancer

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