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J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2013 May;98(5):2009-18. doi: 10.1210/jc.2012-3561. Epub 2013 Mar 29.

Drug prescription patterns in patients with Addison's disease: a Swedish population-based cohort study.

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1
Department of Molecular Medicine and Surgery, Karolinska Institutet, SE-171 76 Stockholm, Sweden. Sigridur.bjornsdottir@ki.se

Abstract

CONTEXT:

There are no published data on drug prescription in patients with Addison's disease (AD).

OBJECTIVE:

Our objective was to describe the drug prescription patterns in Swedish AD patients before and after diagnosis compared with population controls.

DESIGN AND SETTING:

We conducted a population-based cohort study in Sweden.

PATIENTS:

Through the Swedish National Patient Register and the Swedish Prescribed Drug Register, we identified 1305 patients with both a diagnosis of AD and on combination treatment with hydrocortisone/cortisone acetate and fludrocortisone. Direct evidence of the AD diagnosis from patient charts was not available. We identified 11 996 matched controls by the Register of Population.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE:

We determined the ratio of observed to expected number of patients treated with prescribed drugs.

RESULTS:

Overall, Swedish AD patients received more prescribed drugs than controls, and 59.3% of the AD patients had medications indicating concomitant autoimmune disease. Interestingly, both before and after the diagnosis of AD, patients used more gastrointestinal medications, antianemic preparations, lipid-modifying agents, antibiotics for systemic use, hypnotics and sedatives, and drugs for obstructive airway disease (all P values < .05). Notably, an increased prescription of several antihypertensive drugs and high-ceiling diuretics was observed after the diagnosis of AD.

CONCLUSION:

Gastrointestinal symptoms and anemia, especially in conjunction with autoimmune disorders, should alert the physician about the possibility of AD. The higher use of drugs for cardiovascular disorders after diagnosis in patients with AD raises concerns about the replacement therapy.

PMID:
23543658
DOI:
10.1210/jc.2012-3561
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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