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Research: Popular Diabetes Medications Associated with Increase in Bone Fractures
Date:6/8/2009

p>According to researchers, patients with diabetes who took a PPI and clopidogrel together experienced a 44 percent higher relative risk for a cardiovascular event than patients taking clopidogrel alone. Of those who took the medications together, nearly 27 percent experienced a major cardiovascular event within the first 12 months of taking the drugs together, compared to only 19.7 percent of patients on clopidogrel alone.

Communications with Doctors Increase Use of Key Medications in Diabetes

Ace Inhibitors (ACE-I) and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARB), two major categories of antihypertensives, appear to have unique clinical benefits compared to other antihypertensive therapies. New Medco research points to a simple fax communication as an important vehicle for increasing the use of these medications among people with diabetes.

The American Diabetes Association recommends ACE-I or ARB in diabetic patients with certain clinical conditions such as nephropathy or hypertension. Unfortunately, these agents are not frequently prescribed to many patients for whom treatment is indicated. In the Medco study, a fax from the pharmacy to the physician doubled the percent of patients who were prescribed one of these medications.

Patients with diabetes that were not receiving one of these medications were divided into two groups. Physicians from one group received a fax from the pharmacy that outlined clinical guidelines from the American Diabetes Association and provided a list of available medications available in the category and a prescription form pre-populated with the patient's information. Twenty-one percent of patients whose physicians received faxes were started on an ACE-I or ARB, vs. only 10 percent of control patients. Researchers concluded that the findings support the value of the pharmacies engaging with physicians when they find patients who are lacking important therapies.


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SOURCE Medco Health Solutions, Inc.
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