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Elderly Patients More Likely to Fill Epinephrine Prescriptions

Those from outpatient clinics also more likely

MONDAY, Dec. 4 (HealthDay News) -- Elderly patients and those receiving outpatient clinical care are significantly more likely to fill a prescription for self-injectable epinephrine, researchers report in the November issue of the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.

Thomas L. Johnson, M.D., and Amy L. Parker, M.D., of Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas, retrospectively compared the medical records of patients prescribed self-injectable epinephrine with rates of prescription retrieval over a one-year period.

The researchers found that 769 patients were prescribed epinephrine, of whom 82 percent filled at least one prescription. Prescriptions were filled significantly more often by patients 55 years or older as well as by patients from outpatient clinics rather than the emergency department.

"Elderly patients and those receiving care in clinic settings are more likely to fill a self-injectable epinephrine prescription," Johnson and Parker conclude. "Determining why patients do not fill a self-injectable epinephrine prescription may help focus patient education efforts."

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