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Half Of Nursing Home Residents Wrongly Drugged

iStock_000006590105XSmallEver go into a nursing home in the middle of the day?  While the rest if the world busy about their business, many nursing home residents are sound asleep or staring blankly at the ceiling.  Even may of the residents who appear to be awake have a dulled look in their eyes.

A new British Study suggests that many of the nursing home residents who appear to be in trances may be improperly medicated.  In a study of 22 nursing homes, 51% of residents were give inappropriate drugs including anti-psychotics, antidepressants and painkillers.  Frequently, anti-psychotic drugs are used to treat dementia and Alzheimer’s patients even though the drugs were not intended for those residents.

The use of medications is not only inappropriate it may be downright dangerous.  Recently, evidence has come forward linking popular anti-psychotic medications such as: Clozaril, Risperdal, Abilify, Seroquil and Zyprexa to an increased risk of stroke.

At too many nursing homes and long-term care facilities over-medication of residents has become such an accepted part of the facilities culture that there may be little incentive to consider reducing or eliminating the medication all together.  Further, some facilities wish to keep their residents medication level high to reduce the amount of work the nursing home staff needs to do with the residents.  It may be easier to dish out pills than it is to interact with residents who may suffer from dementia or psychiatric problems.

If you believe your family member is inappropriately medicated or is over-medicated ask to speak with his or her physician.  Do not take it upon yourself to reduce medication without the input of medical expertise.

Read more about the over medication of nursing home residents here.

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0 responses to “Half Of Nursing Home Residents Wrongly Drugged”

  1. Elizabeth48 says:

    My Mother was in a nursing home the end of last year for rehab for hip surgery. It was not until her post op visit that I found out my Mother had been on morphine since the day she arrived from the hospital. I had a list of the meds that she was released with and Morphine was not one of them. They did pain assesments on her for 2 shifts then the other shift was the Wong-Baker Faces assessent. On the paperwork it shows there assessments and 2 times she was a 3, and most of the time it was a 0-2. The sheet reads Morphine Sulfate 20mg then underneath that it says Roxanol 20mg/ml Soln give 0.5ml(10mg)sublingually every 6 hours for pain. My problem that I am having with this, is if she was assesed with those low number then why was the morphine given to her? Her Orthopedic doctor was really upset that she had been on these narcotics. Then are alot of other issues that happened in the hospital as far as a bad UTI with Klebsiella in which it was not treated and My Mom ended up in the ER with a bowel obstruction. So many unanswered questions that I have. Don’t know what to do. I am trying to put this behind me but really feel the need to get the word out to people that this can happen to you. I have had to have therapy and also have nightmares of seeing her lying in the ER with the ng tube down her nose. I feel that the health care is going to pot and the elderly are just a number and are falling through the cracks.
    Thanks for listening.

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