Open Access, Peer-reviewed

ISSN 2005-7571 (Online)
Volume 22, Number 4 (4/2015)
Original Article <page. 195-204 >

Changes in Psychotropic Prescription Patterns in Patients Admittedto an Open Psychiatric Ward : Eleven-Year Comparison in a University Hospitalin Gyeonggi-Do

Seonjeong Byun, MD1;Euitae Kim, MD2;Hee Jeong Yoo, MD2,3;Tae Hyon Ha, MD2;In-Young Yoon, MD2,3; and Ki Woong Kim, MD2,3,4;

1;Department of Neuropsychiatry, Seoul National University Hospital, Seoul, 2;Department of Neuropsychiatry, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seongnam, 3;Department of Psychiatry, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, 4;Department of Brain and Cognitive Science, Seoul National University College of Natural Sciences, Seoul, Korea

Objectives : This study investigated the patterns of psychotropic medications prescribed to patients admitted to an open psychiatric ward.

Methods : We reviewed 4282 medical records of patients who were discharged from an open psychiatric ward from May 2003 through April 2014. Data were collected on each patient's age, sex, length of hospital stay, number of past admissions, discharge diagnosis, and kinds and dosages of psychotropic medications at discharge.

Results : Among the 1384 male and 2898 female patients, 3.56 psychotropic medications were prescribed on average, with the number increasing across years, from 3.30 in 2003-2008 to 3.76 in 2009-2014. Prescription rates of antipsychotics, anxiolytics, and hypnotics significantly increased in patients with depressive disorders, bipolar disorders, anxiety disorders, delirium, dementia, and amnestic and other cognitive disorders. Only lithium prescription rates decreased significantly. Prescriptions for two or more anxiolytics and antipsychotics increased during the survey years, while antidepressant polypharmacy rates decreased.

Conclusions : Recently, there has been a significant increase in the number of psychotropic medications prescribed, including antipsychotics, anxiolytics, and hypnotics. Caution should be exercised when prescribing medications to avoid cost increases and the risk of side effects, with uncertain gains in the quality of care.

Key words : Prescription pattern;Psychotropic;Open psychiatric ward.


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