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Questioning pre-op benzodiazepine use in older adults

A recent article in Pharmacy Times highlights the concern of benzodiazepine use in medical settings, especially with older adults.

In a May 11 article by Richard P. Dutton, MD, the author states that "minimizing unnecessary benzodiazepine use has become an important principle for patients and anesthesiologists hoping to have the clearest, quickest emergence from anesthesia, with the lowest risk for delirium or any other cognitive dysfunction." Alternatives for treating anxiety related to medical procedures are available, "including clear prep instructions and good communication."

Mark D. Neuman, MD, MSc, at the University of Pennsylvania leads a collaboration focused on reducing unnecessary use of preoperative midazolam in patients 65 years of age or older scheduled for anesthesia. "The DROP-Benzo trial (De-adopting Routine Preoperative Benzodiazepines for Older Surgical Patients) consists of a year-long sequence of educational efforts followed by block-randomized deployment of 2 behavioral nudges designed to increase mindfulness about the risks and benefits of benzodiazepine administration."

Minimizing unnecessary benzodiazepine use has become an important principle... — Richard P. Dutton, MD

One of the interventions utilized is a 20-page, easy-to-read guide to anesthesia care: This guide was developed by US Anesthesia Partners (USAP) and is routinely distributed to its providers and patients.

Read the full article here:



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