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Polypharmacy Among Elderly Individuals

Elderly aged and disabled people are countered by health problems such as pressure, diabetes, arthritis, chronic heart disease, and kidney illness. As a result, older persons are more likely to take many drugs per day, known as polypharmacy. For a myriad of purposes, it is a source of anxiety for the elderly. Elderly persons are at a higher risk for negative drug reactions (ADRs) due to their weakened immune system and slower medication elimination as a result of age; this risk is exacerbated by increasing the amount of medications they take. Poly-pharmacy has been discovered to have high morbidity, mortality, and a factor for hip fractures in the elderly (Malik et al., 2018, p. 33). It occasionally results in prescriptions cycles: the signs and symptoms (many and generic) of an ADR are mistaken as an illness, and a new therapy is added to the previously prescribed medicine to address the ailment. Notably, polypharmacy can result in worse medication adherence, lower quality of life, and high prescription costs. This essay will entail consideration of polypharmacy among elderly individuals considering a preferable policy that support and help deal with the health problem.

Consequently, the symptoms of polypharmacy are often similar to the natural symptoms and signs of the elderly. Exhaustion, insomnia, lack of appetite, disorientation, falls, despair paralysis, trembling, optical, sensory illusions, anxiety or excitability, and dizziness are some of the symptoms that occur in polypharmacy. Consistently, in terms of the health system, the most common side effect of polypharmacy is dry mouth syndrome, often known as xerostomia. In an aged patient, assessing multidrug therapy is critical to avoid any potential side effects. Assess Review Minimize Optimize Re-assess, Screening Tool to Alert Doctors to the Right Treatment, and Screening Tool to Older Person’s Inappropriate Prescriptions are tools that can be utilized (Fry et al., 2017, p. 22).

By facilitating the withdrawal of excessive or unsuitable medicines, Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment has been shown to reduce the number of medications and regular prescription dosage for patients according to Healthy people 2020. The federal care Act, medicare policy introduced significant modifications to current rules, such as insurance provisions, data gathering, and health center and service accessibility (Mues et al., 2017, p. 15). Polypharmacy drug regimens for senior individuals should be examined periodically to decrease drug dependence’s occurrence and unfavorable consequences. The policy addresses the problem solution by storing sensitive information concerning individuals. It helps avoid unconsciously piling up numerous drugs to older adults or the disabled.

Furthermore, if medically essential, therapies should be started with minimal drug dosages and scaled up as needed. Also, if a pharmaceutical does not have a medical effect or a clinical goal, it should be avoided. Doctors should eliminate redundant drugs from medications for the same condition. Likewise, drugs that only need to be taken once or twice daily should be preferred over those that need to be taken three times per day (Mues et al., 2017, p. 15). The relatively highly risky medications should be replaced with safer alternatives.

In conclusion, the policy administers polypharmacy adequately. Considering that people are prone to drugs side effects in old age due to body changes and reduced functionality rate. Detecting and preventing polypharmacy can assist older adults and the disabled have better outcomes while also improving their quality of life. In order to minimize the negative implications of drug dependence in the elderly patient, prescription evaluation is essential. The policy may be prone to changes and updates; thus, to conspicuously seek real-time information, individuals can review the medicare policy on the policy official online website page.


Fry, M., Arendts, G., & Chenoweth, L. (2017). Emergency nurses evaluate observational pain assessment tools for older people with cognitive impairment. Journal of Clinical Nursing26(9-10), 1281-1290.

Malik, A. T., Quatman, C. E., Phieffer, L. S., Ly, T. V., & Khan, S. N. (2018). Incidence, risk factors and clinical impact of postoperative delirium following open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) for hip fractures: An analysis of 7859 patients from the ACS-NSQIP hip fracture procedure targeted database. European Journal of Orthopaedic Surgery & Traumatology29(2), 435-446.

Mues, K., Liede, A., Liu, J., Wetmore, J., Zaha, R., Bradbury, B. D., Collins, A., & Gilbertson, D. (2017). undefined. Clinical Epidemiology9, 267-277.


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