health brief

Seniors Want Fewer

A Growing Trend Dubbed “Deprescribing”

Seniors Want Fewer  - CGN089/ShutterStock.com
CGN089/ShutterStock.com

In a new National Poll on Healthy Aging by the University of Michigan involving adults aged 50 to 80, the vast majority of respondents expressed an interest in cutting back on prescription medications. Eighty percent would be willing to stop taking one or more drugs if their healthcare provider said it was possible, and 26 percent had already stopped taking at least one drug they had been taking for more than a year.

When asked which meds they would be most interested in stopping, 43 percent named their heart disease pills for high blood pressure or high cholesterol, 13 percent mentioned diabetes medicines and 10 percent included pain management prescriptions. These results reflect a growing trend dubbed “deprescribing.”

According to Deprescribing.org, a researcher-led online resource, it is the planned process of reducing or stopping medications that may no longer be of benefit or could be causing harm. The goal is to reduce medication burden or harm while improving quality of life. Seniors interested in cutting down on the drugs they are taking should consult their healthcare provider to ensure it is safe and helpful to do so.

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