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H Tiwari, A Kumar, SK Kulkarni
Correspondence: Prof S K Kulkarni, firstname.lastname@example.org
Introduction The present pilot study was conducted in order to establish the drug-prescribing trend of anti-hypertensive agents at the Panjab University Health Centre in India.
Methods A pilot study of six-month duration was conducted at the Panjab University Health Centre. The information was collected from the patients attending the outpatient department through a random sample method. World Health Organisation-based prescription-auditing proforma was used for data collection.
Results This study revealed that most of the male patients were on monotherapy (60 percent). In the monotherapy category, four classes of drugs were used. These were calcium channel blockers (48.1 percent), beta-blockers (46.2 percent), ACE inhibitors (3.9 percent) and diuretics (1.9 percent). Among monotherapy drugs, calcium channel blockers were prescribed most whereas diuretics were least used. Among those who were treated with drug combinations, 92.1% received two drugs and 7.9 percent received three drugs. In combination therapy, a two-drug combination consisting of beta-blockers and calcium channel blockers was given to the majority of the patients. Overall, 57.8 percent patients were treated with a single anti-hypertensive drug and 42.2 percent were treated with anti-hypertensive drug combinations.
Conclusion The present study represents the current prescribing trend for anti-hypertensive agents and it highlights certain shortcomings in the existing prescribing practice. There is a considerable scope for improvement, particularly the under-utilisation of diuretics in the present prescribing pattern of anti-hypertensive drugs.
Keywords: anti-hypertensive drugs, drug utilisation, hypertension, prescribing pattern, prescription monitoring
Singapore Med J 2004; 45(3): 117-120