Research Roundup


Debbie Rigby rounds up the latest in research news

Iron deficiency and iron deficiency anaemia in pregnancy

Iron deficiency and iron deficiency anaemia are common during pregnancy and are associated with adverse outcomes. Symptoms include fatigue, weakness, dizziness, irritability, decreased stamina, hair loss and dyspnoea. Oral ferrous iron medications are first-line treatment. Parenteral iron should be considered after the first trimester for patients with intolerance to oral therapy.

CMAJ 2021;193(29):E1137-E1138.

Associations between statins and adverse events in primary prevention of cardiovascular disease

A systematic review of 62 trials including over 120,000 participants followed up for an average of 3.9 years shows the risk of adverse events attributable to statins in primary prevention is low and does not outweigh their efficacy in preventing cardiovascular disease. This suggests the benefit-to-harm balance of statins is generally favourable. There were few significant differences in adverse events between different statins.

BMJ 2021;374:n1537.

Frailty and Clinical Outcomes of Direct Oral Anticoagulants Versus Warfarin in Older Adults with Atrial Fibrillation

In this large cohort study, apixaban was associated with lower rates of adverse events across all frailty levels compared to warfarin. The event rate was 60 per 1000 person-years for apixaban and 92.3 for people initiated on warfarin. Dabigatran and rivaroxaban were associated with lower event rates only among non-frail patients.

Annals of Internal Medicine, 2021.

Opioid medication prescribing in Queensland

Findings from Monitoring of Drugs of Dependence System (MODDS) data in Queensland indicate that most Queensland medical practitioners prescribe lower opioid doses, and that the proportion prescribing lower doses has increased since 2004. The proportion of people dispensed doses of opioids associated with increased risk of accidental overdose (from 50 MME/day) was small and has declined over time.

MJA 2021;215(3):137-8.

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