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Study, Apr/22: Deprescribing clonazepam in primary care older patients...


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The full title of this Brazilian/Belgian study is "Deprescribing clonazepam in primary care older patients: a feasibility study".






Background Inappropriate use of clonazepam by older adults is associated with cognitive impairment, delirium, and falls. Strategies to optimize its use are important to increase patient safety. Objective To evaluate the feasibility of a clonazepam deprescription protocol in the elderly. Methods This is a quasi-experimental study. Elderly people with chronic use of clonazepam and attended in primary care units in two Brazilian municipalities were selected. A deprescription protocol was used, which included five fortnightly meetings between the older adults and the research team, to reduce the dose by 25%. Patients received instructions on sleep hygiene behaviors and the advantages of clonazepam deprescription; family physicians followed a flowchart for gradual dose reduction. In the 1st and 5th meetings, there were medical appointments for anamnesis and discharge. The monitoring of patients and the application of tests were carried out by the research team. Results Of the 35 elderly people included in the study, 27 reached the end; 81.5% achieved deprescription: 22.2% stopped completely and 59.3% decreased the dose. At the last meeting, 20% of elderly patients reported an increase in blood pressure. Conclusion The high rate of deprescription and the little relevance of clonazepam withdrawal reactions, showed that the use of the protocol was effective. However, the increase in blood pressure and the worsening of sleep quality in the last meeting show the need for adjustment in the last stage of the deprescription process.

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