The first step in figuring out the nature of the issue is to determine the characteristics of patients who get sedative-hypnotic/anxiolytic medication, as well as the clinical recording procedure in primary care, which will assist guide future clinical research and practice methods. Characterize patients who got a sedative-hypnotic/anxiolytic prescription in primary care and understand the clinical documentation of sedative-hypnotic/anxiolytic indication and monitoring in electronic medical records (EMR). About 4 primary care clinics in Winnipeg randomly selected patients who were given a prescription for a benzodiazepine or Z-drug hypnotic between January 2014 and August 2016. Data was gathered retroactively that included sex, age, comorbidities, medications, smoking status, and alcohol status were all documented patient data. Drug type, indication, usage pattern, dosage, adverse events, psychosocial intervention, tapering attempts, social support, life stressor, and monitoring parameters for sedative-hypnotic use were some treatment variables. Demographic and clinical characteristics were described using descriptive statistics. Records from 200 primary care patients prescribed sedative-hypnotic/anxiolytics were analyzed (mean age 55.8 years old, 61.5%≥65 years old, 61.0% female). In 29.5% of the sample, sedative-hypnotic/anxiolytic use had been ongoing for more than equal to a year. The most often prescribed drugs were zopiclone (30.7%) and lorazepam (28.7%). Only 9.5% of patients had records of previous attempts to taper off their sedative-hypnotic/anxiolytic. The most frequently reported indications for sedative-hypnotic/anxiolytic drugs were anxiety (33.0%) and sleep (18.0%), although the indication was unknown for 57.0% of patients. Patients reported depression (33.5%) and falls (18.5%) after introducing these agents. In line with earlier research on sedative-hypnotics, a higher percentage of female users and those 65 and older acquired a prescription for one. Researchers discovered contradictions in the information provided about the usage of sedative-hypnotic/anxiolytic drugs. In most patients, the purpose of their use was unclear. These findings will help them understand the state of the problem in primary care and drive future efforts for clinical research.

Source: bmcprimcare.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12875-022-01724-9