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  • 1
    ISSN: 1432-1041
    Keywords: prescribing habits ; psychotropics ; drug utilization ; methodology
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Medicine
    Notes: Summary The prescription of psychotropic drugs at a multidoctor district health centre in northern Sweden in 1973, was analysed by means of problemoriented medical records. Of the 22,000 inhabitants of the district 10,700 consulted the health centre. Psychotropic drugs were prescribed for 11.3% of the patients, corresponding to 5% of the inhabitants of the area. Sixty per cent of the patients received one psychotropic prescription and 90% not more than three. Two-thirds of prescriptions were for women. Hypnotics, sedatives and minor tranquillisers constituted 64% of all prescriptions, major tranquillisers 24% and antidepressants 12%. One fifth of the patients obtained drugs belonging to more than one of the major psychotropic groups during the year. Insomnia, psychoneurosis and depression made up two-thirds of the indications for psychotropic drug therapy. More than thirty different psychotropic drugs were prescribed for the two major indications. There was considerable variation in how the different doctors prescribed drugs for the same indication. Fifty-nine different drug products were prescribed, of which the commonest five constituted more than half of the total number. Individual doctors used from 22 to 38 different psychotropic drugs.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1432-1041
    Keywords: Diabetes ; antidiabetic drugs ; drug utilization ; prescribing habits ; geographical differences ; methodology
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Medicine
    Notes: Summary In a comparison of three European countries Sweden utilized more antidiabetic drugs than Northern Ireland and Norway. Swedish wholesale figures for a quarter of a year used for the comparison were based on “daily doses”/1000 inhabitants/day. In order to validate the Swedish figures, a defined geographical area was investigated in 1972–1973, the island of Gotland with 54000 inhabitants. Antidiabetic drugs distributed on a wholesale basis were compared with those distributed on a prescription basis. Additional information was gathered (interviews, questionnaires, hospital records etc.) from a sample of patients (n=54) and their prescribing doctors (n=37). There was good agreement between the wholesale and prescription figures for oral antidiabetic drugs over a three month period (30.0 vs 29.8 “daily doses”/1000 inhabitants/day), but this did not apply to insulin (5.9 vs 7.2) unless a longer time period was studied. The average daily doses prescribed were higher than the theoretically derived “daily doses”. Combination antidiabetic drug therapy was preseribed for 28% of the patients. Thirteen different oral antidiabetics were issued during the study period, four of which constituted 90% of the total. Phenformin, the second most commonly prescribed oral antidiabetic drug was prescribed by 33 doctors, and metformin was prescribed by only 14 doctors. Few patients were treated with diet alone and few doctors could obtain assistance from a dietician. There was little or no evidence that patients failed to comply with the prescriptions, but by contrast they adhered poorly to written dietary instructions.
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  • 3
    ISSN: 1432-1041
    Keywords: Key words Drug utilization ; Estonia
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Medicine
    Notes: Abstract Objective: To determine the patterns of drug use in Estonia for the years 1989 and 1994–1995, i.e. for the years before and after the pharmaceutical services in the country changed from a state monopoly to a competitive market. Methods: The wholesale data from Estonia and the defined daily doses methodology were used. For comparison, national statistics on medicines from Finland and Sweden for the years 1994–1995 are shown. Results: The general sales of drugs in Estonia decreased almost twofold in all major pharmacological groups from 1989 to 1994 and subsequently increased by 10%–30% in 1995. Substantial differences in patterns of drug use between Estonia and the two Nordic countries were observed. The amount of prescription-only medicines used in Estonia was approximately 25% of that used in Finland and Sweden. The amount of over-the-counter drugs used was 61% of that used in Finland and 58% of that used in Sweden. In the drug use patterns in Estonia, some common trends can be noted: (1) persistent traditions, such as the low use of diuretics, beta-blockers, antithrombotics and inhalant anti-asthmatic drugs; (2) changes in prescription preferences – central anti-adrenergic drugs, pyrazolones, aminoglycosides and barbiturates are being replaced by calcium channel blockers and angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors, propionic acid derivatives, cephalosporins and benzodiazepines, respectively; (3) rapidly increasing use of drugs not prescribed in the 1980s, such as hormonal contraceptives, opioids and antiulcer drugs, which strongly improves the quality of pharmacotherapy in Estonia. Conclusion: The general trends in Estonia and the two Nordic countries are similar – the use of newer and more effective drugs is increasing and that of older ones decreasing. The changes are more rapid in Estonia than in Finland and Sweden, but, because of a short observation period, the use of newer drugs not yet prevailing. The international differences in drug utilization observed in this study may possibly be related mainly to the prescription preferences (e.g. therapeutic traditions) and less dependent on the respective health care systems (e.g. reimbursement schemes) and economic state of the country.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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  • 4
    ISSN: 1432-1041
    Keywords: Drug use ; Estonia ; Nordic countries ; geographical difference ; wholesale data
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Medicine
    Notes: Summary Wholesale data from Estonia covering all drug supplies during the period 1983–1989 have been studied using the defined daily dose (DDD) methodology. The use of all major pharmacological groups was compared with the corresponding statistics from the Nordic countries. The patterns of drug use showed large differences between the Nordic countries and Estonia. Many drugs were used in large quantities in Estonia although they are no longer considered to be first-line medications in the Nordic countries because of their high risk to benefit ratio. These included the pyrazolones (phenylbutazone, aminophenazone), chloramphenicol, aminoglycoside antibiotics, and Rauwolfia alkaloids. On the other hand, several groups of effective drugs were available in Estonia only in limited amounts, including the histamine (H2) receptor antagonists, hormonal contraceptives, beta-adrenoceptor antagonists, angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors, and cephalosporins. There were also differences in the use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, blood pressure lowering agents, and anti-asthmatic drugs. Amongst the factors influencing drug usage it appears that economic status, the ordering and invoicing routines of the pharmaceutical services, and therapeutic traditions were the main reasons for the differences found.
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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