Amina Mahdy has completed her PhD in 2002 from College of Pharmacy, Cairo University, Egypt, in the specialty of Pharmacology & Therapeutics. She got a Clinical Pharmacy Preparatory Diploma from Oxford Academy for Medical Science, United Kingdom. She is currently an Associate Professor and Head of Pharmacology Department in Dubai Pharmacy College, UAE. She has published 14 original articles in peer-reviewed journals and is serving as an Editorial Board Member in a reputed journal.


Prescription analysis highlights the prescribing behavior of clinicians and helps achieving rational drug use. The incidence of drug toxicity is higher in elderly than younger population due to several factors. The present study was undertaken to investigate the trends of drug prescribing for elderly patients in an attempt to assess the extent of potentially-inappropriate prescribing for this population in a tertiary hospital in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Using a retrospective analysis, 718 prescriptions issued to elderly outpatients at different clinics were investigated. The study was performed from 1st of January till 20th of February 2013. WHO prescriber indicators were used to analyze prescriptions recording the average number of medicines per encounter, number of medicines prescribed as generics, number of prescriptions containing an antibiotic, or an injection, and therapeutic group of all the prescribed medicines. The extent of potentially-inappropriate prescribing was estimated using American Geriatrics Society Updated Beer’s criteria (2012). Data were presented using SPSS program. Findings revealed poly pharmacy in elderly with an average number of drugs per prescription being 3.2 deviating from the WHO standard of 1.6 to 1.8. Cardiovascular drugs were the most widely prescribed medications. Prescriptions were found to contain antibiotics and injection by a percentage of 10.8% and 12.9%, respectively. 14.7% of prescriptions had one or more potentially inappropriate medication with anticholinergics, NSAIDs and aspirin being the most common. A feedback through personal interviews as well as workshops for the health care team may be considered an effective intervention to optimize the prescribing pattern for the elderly.

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