Concomitant use of anti-dementia drugs with psychotropic drugs in Norway—a population-based study
E. M. Langballe, Division of Mental Health, Norwegian Institute of Public Health, PO Box 4404 Nydalen, N-0403 Oslo, Norway. E-mail: email@example.com
Concomitant use of anti-dementia drugs with psychotropic drugs is potentially problematic in patients with dementia. The aim of this study was to investigate how frequently patients in Norway use anti-dementia drugs concomitantly with psychotropic drugs.
Analyses are based on data from the Norwegian Prescription Database. All patients who had an anti-dementia drug (ATC-code N06D) dispensed from a Norwegian pharmacy between January 2004 and July 2009 were included.
A total of 33 816 individuals received anti-dementia drugs at some time during this period. The total concomitant use of anti-dementia drugs with psychotropic drugs was 57.4% in men and 65.8% in women. Compared with men, a significantly higher percentage of women used antidepressants (35.8% versus 27.2%), mild hypnotics (28.8% versus 23.6%), benzodiazepines (25.4% versus 20.8%) and opioids (22.8% versus 17.4%) concomitantly with anti-dementia drugs. Concomitant use of antipsychotics with anti-dementia drugs was about 16% for both male and female patients. Of the total sample, 11.9% of the women and 11.7% of the men used acetylcholinesterase inhibitor (AChEI) anti-dementia drugs concomitantly with an interacting psychotropic drug.
The concomitant use of psychotropic drugs with anti-dementia drugs was extensive, especially among women. Co-medication with potentially interacting drugs occurred at a rate of one in 10. The concomitant use of anti-dementia drugs with psychotropic drugs identified in this study may inform the ongoing clinical debate about drug use in this patient group. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.