Trends in Antidepressant-related Adverse Drug Events in Hospitalized Patients from 2001 to 2011 in the U.S.


Purpose: The rates of adverse drug events (ADEs) are increasing over time mainly due to the aging of the population and the growth in the number of comorbidities and polypharmacy. Depression is a prevalent mental disorder and the 4th leading cause of disability in the world as per the World Health Organization (WHO). Use of antidepressants can lead to ADEs. This study aimed to examine changes in incidence of antidepressant-related ADEs (ArADEs) in hospitalizations from 2001 to 2011 among different demographic groups and types of hospitals; and to examine changes in lengths of stay (LOS) and hospital charges in ArADE-related hospitalizations from 2001 to 2011. Method: The institutional review board approved this study based on de-identified database. The Health Care Utilization Project database, which covers more than 1000 hospitals in 45 states, was used. Weights of individual inpatient stays provided in the database were used to estimate the national total. ADEs included harm caused by a drug at normal doses, medication errors, and other harms caused by use of a drug. Illicit drug use and cases of intentional harm or self-inflicted injury were excluded. Primary diagnoses of ArADE were considered as an indicator of ADE-caused admissions and secondary diagnoses as a proxy for hospital-acquired ArADEs. ArADEs in different demographic groups were examined including age, race, gender, and rural/urban hospitals. Age was categorized into 0 to 6, 7 to 17, 18 to 64, and 65 years or older. LOS and hospital charges for ArADE-related cases were compared between 2001 and 2011. Chi-square test and t test were used with alpha=0.01. Results:There were 17,375 and 20,588 ArADE-caused admissions in 2001 and 2011, respectively. There was a 20.4% increase among the group of 18 to 64 and a 68.2% increase among the group of 65 years or older (p Conclusion: There was an increase in ArADE-caused admissions and a decrease in hospital-acquired ArADEs. The great increase in ArADE-caused admissions among elderly patients should be noted and addressed by practitioners and policy makers. The great increase in hospital charges needs further research

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