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CVS Caremark Study Documents Changes in Prescription Drug Use to Treat High Blood Pressure, High Cholesterol and Diabetes in Children and Adolescents
Date:4/6/2009

igh cholesterol among children and adolescents over a time period that spanned close to three years. Results found that the one-month prevalence of use of these medications increased 15.2%, from 3.3 per 1,000 youths in November 2004 to 3.8 per 1,000 youths in June 2007. In addition, the results indicated that 16- to 18-year olds had the highest rate of use overall, with treatment rates of 5.9 per 1,000 per month for females and 5.1 per 1,000 per month for males.

Overall, antidiabetic therapy was most common (1.9 per 1,000 per month), followed closely by antihypertensive therapy (1.5 per 1,000 per month). Dyslipidemia pharmacotherapy was least common (0.2 per 1,000 per month) and use of statins, the most common dyslipidemia class, actually declined by 22.9% during the study period. Among the antihypertensive drug classes reviewed in the study, beta-blockers and ACE inhibitors were the most commonly used, with ACE inhibitor use increasing 27.7% among 6- to 11-year old females and 25.2% among males in the same age group. In addition, during the study period, insulin use alone increased by 14.8% and insulin use in conjunction with oral antidiabetic use increased by 23.3%.

"There is growing recognition that childhood obesity is nearing an epidemic and, as a result, consensus treatment guidelines for the associated cardiovascular conditions and risk factors recommend the introduction of pharmaceutical treatments if life style and behavioral modifications fail to achieve desired results," said Dr. Liberman. "Given CVS Caremark's focus on patient engagement through Proactive Pharmacy Care we believe it is important to continue efforts to provide primary care pediatricians and consumers with up-to-date information on optimal patient screening, lifestyle and behavioral management techniques and the full range of pharmaceutical options available for the treatment of these conditions in children."

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SOURCE CVS Caremark
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