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Editor's Correspondence
April 27, 2009

Editor's Correspondence: COMMENTS AND OPINIONS

Arch Intern Med. 2009;169(8):809-813. doi:10.1001/archinternmed.2009.80

We read with interest the article published by Leendertse et al,1 which addresses an important issue of medication-related hospital admissions. In their study, the majority of subjects were elderly, yet the authors make no mention of some of the medications such as digoxin, one of the medications in the Beers list.2 In the study, complications of the digestive system were related to the bulk of the preventable hospital admissions attributed to the use of antiplatelets and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. As reported in the data collection section of the article, these medications were dispensed by the pharmacy. It is not clear if these were prescribed by a clinician or if they were bought over the counter (OTC). This has clinical implications because these medications can be bought OTC in the United States. If the OTC medications were also included, it would be interesting to know if there were any admissions related to the use of herbal medications. We would like to know if the Beers list of medications were given consideration in the study by Leendertse et al,1 since its use has been expanded beyond research studies.3

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