Inproceedings: an article in a conference proceedings.
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Prevalence of patients' difficulties in swallowing solid oral dosage forms
Title of the conference
39th ESCP (European Society of Clinical Pharmacy) European Symposium on Clinical Pharmacy and 13th SFPC (Société Française de Pharmacie Clinique) Congress: Clinical Pharmacy at the Front line of Innovations
Lyon, France, October 21-23, 2010
International Journal of Clinical Pharmacy
Publication type : Meeting Abstract
Introduction Swallowing difficulties, or dysphagia, can occur in anyage group, although it is most common among elderly people. It canaffect patients' ability to take solid oral dosage forms, thus compromisingmedication adherence. Although literature is poor, availabledata show that prevalence in the general population ranges from 25 to60%. Prevalence in community pharmacies needs to be explored.Materials & Methods Community pharmacies were recruited from arandom selection in three Swiss states: Basel-Stadt (BS), Basel-Landschaft (BL) and Lausanne (LA). Patients' ability to swallowsolid oral medications was enquired with a semi-structured interview;the interviewer spent 4 h in each included pharmacy. Each consecutivepatient (18 years and older) entering the pharmacy with aprescription for at least 3 different solid oral forms was enrolled.Study was approved by the Lausanne ethics committee.Results Sixty pharmacies took part in the study (20 in BS, 10 in BL,30 in LA) between March and May 2010. Patient inclusion rate was77.8% (410/527). Prevalence of swallowing disorders was 22.4% (92/410). Patients with swallowing disorders were older (mean age: 67.5± 16 years vs. 63.0 ± 14 years, range 19-96; p = 0.03) and moreoften women (69.6% vs. 59.1%; Chi2 = 3.3, p = 0.04) than patientswithout swallowing disorders. They had on average 4.6 ± 2.7 drugswith a mean number of 5.5 ± 3.3 tablets or capsules to take daily,which didn't differ from the number of drugs taken by patientswithout swallowing difficulties (4.9 ± 2.5 drugs and 5.9 ± 3.5 tablets;n.s.). The difficulty was mainly related to the big size (63%) orthe quality of pill coating (rough, sticky, 14%). Twenty-one patients(37.5%) stated that their swallowing disorders resulted in nonadherence, rated as rarely (12 patients), sometimes (6 patients), veryoften (1 patient) or always (2 patients). According to patients, nopharmacist and only 2 physicians enquired about patients' swallowingissue.Discussion & Conclusion Swallowing difficulties are frequent amongpatients in community pharmacies in Switzerland with an estimatedprevalence of 22%. The problem resulted in non adherence or partialadherence in at least 35% of these patients. However, pharmacists andphysicians did not routinely inquire about the disorder. Guidelinesshould be developed for promoting systematic approaches of patientsin community pharmacies.
Community pharmacy, Prevalence, Prospective study, Swallowing difficulties, Switzerland,
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