Objective: We aimed to estimate the prevalence of prescriptions to long-acting benzodiazepines (BZDs) among elderly outpatients in Korea in 2013 and analyze the factors that led to inappropriate prescription practices. Methods: Using the Korea Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service-National Patients Sample database in 2013, we estimated the pattern of BZD prescription among elderly outpatients. BZDs were categorized as long-acting (half-life (T1/2) ≥ 20 hours) or short-acting (T1/2 < 20 hours). In addition, we investigated the pattern of BZD prescription for populations defined according to patient, healthcare provider, and geographic characteristics. Multivariate logistic regression analysis was performed to estimate odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals and identify predictors of long-acting BZD use. Results: Overall, 58,056 elderly patients (38,910 females, 67%) received at least 1 BZD prescription. The total number of BZD prescriptions was 78,843, of which long-acting BZD prescriptions accounted for 44.7%. Diazepam was the most frequently prescribed BZD (39.7%). Long-acting BZDs were most frequently prescribed in the primary-care setting and were relatively frequently prescribed in rural areas. Of the patients prescribed long-acting BZDs, 435 (3.5%) had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Long-acting BZD use varied across different medical institutions (p < 0.05). Conclusions: A decrease in long-acting BZD use was identified relative to data from previous studies. However, BZDs continued to be used, and their use should be further limited in the primary-care setting and in rural areas. The results of this study may provide fundamental data for further review of BZD utilization.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||International journal of clinical pharmacology and therapeutics|
|State||Published - Jun 2017|
- Long-acting benzodiazepines
- National health insurance data-based study