Bastiaan Sallevelt

34 CHAPTER 2.1 Abstract Introduction Adverse drug reactions (ADRs) account for 10% of acute hospital admissions in older people, often under-recognised by physicians. The Dutch geriatric guideline recommends screening all acutely admitted older patients with polypharmacy with an ADR trigger tool comprising ten triggers and associated drugs frequently causing ADRs. This study investigated the performance of this tool and the recognition by usual care of ADRs detected with the tool. Methods A cross-sectional study was performed in patients ≥70 years with polypharmacy acutely admitted to the geriatric ward of the University Medical Centre Utrecht. Electronic health records (EHRs) were screened for trigger-drug combinations listed in the ADR trigger tool. Two independent appraisers assessed causal probability with the WHO-UMC algorithm and screened EHRs for recognition of ADRs by attending physicians. Performance of the tool was defined as the positive predictive value (PPV) for ADRs with a possible, probable or certain causal relation. Results In total, 941 trigger-drug combinations were present in 73% (n = 253/345) of the patients. The triggers fall, delirium, renal insufficiency and hyponatraemia covered 86% (n = 810/941) of all trigger-drug combinations. The overall PPV was 41.8% (n = 393/941), but the PPV for individual triggers was highly variable ranging from 0–100%. Usual care recognised the majority of ADRs (83.5%), increasing to 97.1% when restricted to possible and certain ADRs. Conclusion The ADR trigger tool has predictive value; however, its implementation is unlikely to improve the detection of unrecognised ADRs in older patients acutely admitted to our geriatric ward. Future research is needed to investigate the tool’s clinical value when applied to older patients acutely admitted to non-geriatric wards.