Research Roundup

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Debbie Rigby rounds up the latest in research news

Complementary medicine use by community‐dwelling older Australians

Research data shows nearly three-quarters of older Australians reported using complementary medicines either daily or occasionally. fish oil (44.5%), vitamin D (33.8%), glucosamine (26.7%), and calcium supplements (24.7%) were the most frequently reported CMs. Complementary medicines were used by larger proportions of women than men.

Med J Aust 2021; 214 (3): 140-141.

Nortriptyline for pain in knee osteoarthritis in general practice

This study suggests nortriptyline does not significantly reduce pain or improve physical function and stiffness in people with knee OA. Participants randomised placebo-controlled trial were randomised to receive either nortriptyline (25mg to 100mg per day) or identical placebo for 14 weeks. Interestingly participants in the nortriptyline group had a greater proportion of days when they did not take any NSAID or paracetamol. Dry mouth, constipation and sweating were commonly reported adverse effects.

British Journal of General Practice 10 February 2021.

Comparative effectiveness of oral anticoagulants in everyday practice

This study evaluated the comparative effectiveness of vitamin K antagonists, direct thrombin inhibitors and factor Xa inhibitors in patients with atrial fibrillation at risk of stroke in everyday practice. OAC treatment compared with no OAC treatment was associated with decreased risk of all-cause mortality and non-haemorrhagic stroke/systemic embolism but increased risk of major bleeding.

Heart 2021.

Medication review interventions to reduce hospital readmissions in older people

In this study medication review in combination with medication reconciliation, patient education, professional education and transitional care, was associated with a lower risk of hospital readmissions compared to usual care. An effect of medication review without co‐interventions was not demonstrated.

Journal of American Geriatric Society, first published 12 February 2021.

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