Dispensing patterns of emergency medicines prescribed by Australian dentists from 1992 to 2018 - A pharmacoepidemiology study

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Objective: As the population ages, dentists are likely to encounter medical emergencies due to metabolic factors andpolypharmacy. To date, there have been no documented studies in Australia that have analysed the prescription rate ofPharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS)-funded emergency medicines for dentists. Therefore, this pharmacoepidemiologystudy aims to describe the dispensing patterns of emergency medicines as prescribed by dental practitioners, related tomedicines covered by the Australian PBS system.
Methods:Data on dental medications used for emergencies, under thePBS, from 1992 to 2018, were accessed. Cumulative dispensing counts were calculated. Data on medications that werenot utilised were also collected in the form of the crude cumulative count.
Results:Out of the 56 medications on thedental PBS schedule, eight were utilised for medical emergencies, with a total of 432 prescriptions on a national level,over 27 years. The commonly utilised lifesaving medicines of adrenaline, glucagon, as well as glyceryl trinitrate, had atotal prescription count of 147, 88 and 27 respectively. Medicines used for opiate overdose; naloxone, had a total pre-scription count of one. Only one medicine (benztropine injection) for medical emergencies had a prescription count of 0.
Conclusion:This study highlights the dispensing patterns of medicines prescribed by dentists for emergency scenarios.Although this study did not assess the appropriateness of use of the emergency medicines, further investigation may berequired to ensure the future safety of patients when encountering emergency scenarios.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)254-258
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Dental Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2020


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