Over-the-counter (OTC) Analgesics and the Implications for Patient Care

An Interdisciplinary Look at Labeling Changes to OTC Analgesics and the Implications for Patient Care published by the Gerontological Society of America in 2018.

Opioid-related Adverse Reactions Underreported

A recent pilot study by researchers at the University of Connecticut concluded that a significant number of older adults do not contact their primary care provider after experiencing an analgesic related adverse drug reaction (ADR). In this study with twenty-two older adults, eight participants having an opioid related ADR did not seek help within the healthcare system. Examples of reported opioid related ADRs included symptoms of confusion, constipation, and fatigue. The authors recommend enhanced patient education, thorough medication reconciliation, and reaching out to patient after prescription.  [Learn More]

Fast Fact on Opioid Prescribing in Older Adults

A new FAST FACT published in the Journal of Palliative Medicine focuses on the safety considerations needed when prescribing opioids to older adults. This FAST FACT provides an important reminder of drug and dosing information for prescribing opioids to older adults. For example, avoiding drugs like meperidine and codeine. Authors also remind practitioners of the risks for adverse drug reactions in older adults compared to other adults related to the physiologic changes of aging, atypical presentation in older adults, increased risk for falls while taking opioids, and increased risk for delirium.  [Learn More]

Innovative Pain Assessment Methods: The Future? 

A new iPhone application for pain assessment in older adults with cognitive impairment recently underwent a qualitative feasibility assessment with UK paramedics. The paramedics reported a high need for pain assessment tools and education when caring for older adults with cognitive impairment. However, they reported concerns about integrating the use of technology in the paramedic setting. Authors conclude by discussing the need for innovative pain assessment methods for the pre-hospital setting and the importance of continued work in this area.  [Learn More]