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Evaluation of Proton Pump Inhibitors Prescribing Among Hospitalized Patients: A Cross-Sectional Study.

BACKGROUND: Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are the most effective agents for managing acid-related disorders. However, inappropriate prescribing of PPIs is becoming an issue of concern.

OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to assess the appropriate utilization of PPIs in terms of indication, dose, frequency, and route of administration during admission and discharge. Furthermore, direct costs associated with inappropriate PPI use were calculated.

METHODS: A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted at the internal medicine department of a tertiary hospital in Palestine from January 1, 2021, to June 30, 2021. The medical records of patients aged 18 years or older, hospitalized for 48 hours or more, and receiving oral or intravenous (IV) PPIs during their stay were collected and evaluated for the appropriateness of PPIs prescribed according to clinical guidelines.

RESULTS: Of 262 patients, 80.2% had an appropriate indication for prophylaxis (67.6%) or treatment (12.6%). A total of 230 patients were prescribed IV pantoprazole.182 (79.1%) had an appropriate indication, whereas 122/182 (67%) received IV PPI instead of oral without an appropriate indication. Of the 32 patients who received 20 mg of oral omeprazole, 28 (87.5%) had an appropriate indication, dose, and route of administration, whereas 16/28 (57.1%) had an inappropriate frequency. At discharge, 32.5% of patients were discharged with unnecessary PPI prescriptions. The total direct cost of inappropriate PPI Indications and route of administration in 188 patients over six months was $1518.

CONCLUSION: This study showed that most patients received a PPI for an appropriate indication with the correct dose. However, a high prevalence of inappropriate IV pantoprazole administration was observed, resulting in the highest costs, demonstrating the importance of correctly ordering IV medications. Adherence to clinical guidelines, such as those of the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG), will improve the appropriateness of PPI prescribing, prevent complications, and reduce healthcare costs.

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