OBJECTIVE: To map the impact of spinal cord lesion (SCL) on medication. STUDY DESIGN: Registration of medication for 72 patients before SCL and at discharge from the Department for Spinal Cord Injuries. SETTING: Department for Spinal Cord Injuries, East Denmark. METHODS: The changes in medication for each Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical (ATC) Classification System group were registered for all patients, who were discharged from Department for Spinal Cord Injuries during 2010. The changes in medication per se were calculated for different parts of the population: non-traumatic, traumatic patients, men, women, paraplegia, tetraplegia, American Spinal Injury Association Impairment Scale (AIS) A, B or C, AIS D, age 0-45, 46-60 and 60+. In addition, comparisons of changes in medication were made between complementary parts of the population. RESULTS: The overall increase in medication after SCL was 3.29 times (P<0.001). Statistically significant increases were seen for most medicine categories. When studying subgroups of the population, the increase was most constantly seen for the medicine in the groups 'Alimentary tract and metabolism' and 'Nervous system'. The highest overall increases were seen in patients with AIS A, B and C compared with AIS D (P<0.05). There was no difference between traumatic and non-traumatic SCL, men and women, and younger compared with older patients. CONCLUSION: SCL elicits a general massive need for medicine. The relative increase is most pronounced for the more severely injured (AIS A, B and C). The increase in medication may have implications for side effects and for the economy of all involved.
Spinal Cord, 2014, Vol 52, Issue 5, p. 358-363
Adolescent; Adult; Age Factors; Aged; Aged, 80 and over; Denmark; Female; Humans; Male; Middle Aged; Patient Discharge; Recovery of Function; Severity of Illness Index; Spinal Cord Injuries; Treatment Outcome; Young Adult; Journal Article