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Browsing by Subject "older adults"

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  • Luoma, Elisa (2020)
    Family caregiving refers to the organization of home care for an older adult, disabled or sick person with the assistance of a relative or other close person. The number of elderly carers (> 65 years) of all family garegivers is significant. There are challenges concerning family caregiving for the older adults, due to increased age is in connection with decreased physical performance and increased number of medications and polypharmacy. Despite these factors, there has been little research on the medication safety in the family caregiving among older adults. The aim of this Master's thesis was to identify factors influencing the ability of a caregiver to cope with the medication management of the older adults. These factors were divided into subgategories: factors associated a family caregiver, associated a care recipient and system-oriented factors. The research was conducted as a method triangulation, in which the data were collected through two interviews with home visits (n = 21) and related questionnaires. The questionnaire data were quantitatively analyzed by calculating the frequencies and relative frequencies. The transcribed interviews were analyzed by abductive content analysis, combining both deductive and inductive approach. James Reason's theory of human error was used as the theoretical framework. Caregiving families participating in this research were very different compared with each other. Some family caregivers and care recipients were in good physical condition while others were severely disabled. However, the situation of the families was not individually considered when considering appropriate support services for the families. The workload of family caregivers due to the pain and the absence of days off contributed to the difficulty of medication management. The foremost system-oriented challenges in the management of the medications were: 1) difficult for the families to reach the physician and 2) for those families where assisted home care helped the caregiver, the families were not satisfied with its functioning. Due to the poor availability of physicians and the lack of a family physician, there was no one in control of the medication as a whole and there was inadequate monitoring of the medication. In the assisted home care, challenges were caused by the fact that home care visits were conducted over a wide period of time, which created challenges for giving the medications. Carers do not receive sufficient support from the society for the management of the medications. The medication safety of the older adults in the family caregiving is particularly affected by the difficulty of reaching a physician, the inadequacy of support from the assisted home care, the failure to recognize the individuality of caregiving families, and the caregivers’ burden due to pain and lack of days off. Support for caregivers must be at the forefront of society in the future, so that caregivers can cope with heavy nursing care and complicated medications, even without excessive self-activity.
  • Skullbacka, Simone (2019)
    Many drugs are associated with the risk of QT prolongation and torsades de pointes (TdP). The risk increases with other risks factors for QT prolongation. Recognizing risk factors and QT prolonging drugs is critical in the management of this drug-related problem. The aim of this master’s thesis was to study the prevalence of use of QT prolonging drugs in older adults receiving home care. Additionally, the aim was to study concomitant use of QT prolonging drugs as well as clinically significant QT prolonging drug-drug interactions in the participants. The secondary objective was to study the most commonly used QT prolonging in the participants. The material used in this master’s thesis originated from a randomized controlled trial in City of Lohja, Finland, which enhanced a coordination in medication risk management for older home care clients. The analysis of the baseline data collected in fall 2015 was only deepened regarding QT prolonging drugs. The participants (n=188) were older adults (≥65 years) receiving regular home care from City of Lohja, randomized into an intervention group (n=101) and a control group (n=87). The majority of the participants were women (69%). The mean age of the participants was 83 years. Data on the participants’ drugs were collected from their medication lists. Clinically significant drug-drug interactions were identified using the SFINX database. The QTDrugs Lists of CredibleMeds were used for identifying drugs associated with QT prolongation and TdP. On average, the participants (n=188) used 2.3 drugs (SD 1.3, median 2.0) associated with QT prolongation and TdP. Of the participants, 36% (n=67) used drugs with known risk of TdP (QTDrugs List 1). The most commonly used drugs with known risk of TdP were donepezil and citalopram. The prevalence of QTDrugs List 2 drugs (possible risk of TdP) was 36% (n=67). Most of the participants (n=156, 83%) used drugs which under certain circumstances are associated with TdP (QTDrugs List 3). One fifth (21%) of the participants used concomitantly 2-3 drugs associated with QT prolongation and TdP. QT prolonging drugdrug interactions (SFINX-D interactions) were found in 3% of the participants. The drugs involved in the drug-drug interactions were donepezil, (es)citalopram and haloperidol. The prevalence of use of clinically relevant QT prolonging drugs (QTDrugs Lists 1-2) was higher in this study compared with the prevalence in outpatients in previous studies. Concomitant use of QT prolonging drugs is common in outpatients. Health care professionals need to be educated on the risks of QT prolongation, TdP and the risks of using QT prolonging drugs concomitantly. Risk assessment tools considering patient-specific risk factors could be more widely used, as they may reduce modifiable risk factors, and actual events of QT prolongation and TdP may be avoided. There is a need for systematic procedures for assessing and managing the risks of QT prolongation and TdP in the Finnish health care system.