Adverse Drug Reactions Epidemiology

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Adverse Drug Reactions Epidemiology

Adverse Drug Reactions Epidemiology


Medicines are used to cure diseases and reduce or control health problems. However, it is the medicines that can also harm one's health if not used correctly (Alomar & Strauch, 2012). In fact, medication is also a significant cause of adverse reactions that impact patient health with negative outcomes. Adverse Drug Reactions or ADR are unfortunate consequences of the pharmacotherapy and cause various negative effects in patients. In fact, the WHO defines an adverse drug reaction (ADR) as harmful or unwanted effect that appears due to the doses normally used for prophylaxis, diagnosis or treatment (Lee, 2006).

In fact, epidemiological studies related to ADR have shown that between 0.86 and 3.9% of visits to emergency departments are caused by the adverse effects and about 5 to 10% of revenues are due to reactions of this type. Fortunately a large number are usually mild, but about 20% may endanger life or even 2.9% are usually fatal (Lee, 2006). This shows that currently the adverse reactions of drugs cause prolong hospitalization, increase the cost, having a double impact, the social and economic well being in some countries within the leading causes of death constitutes a health problem.


No doubt, adverse reactions related to drugs are a new health problem, determining significant morbidity and mortality. Adverse drug reactions (ADRs) constitute a public health problem as they are a major cause of hospital admission in many cases increasing the hospitalization and other factors constituting health expenditures (Lee, 2006). The World Health Organization (WHO) in its concern to intervene in preventing ADRs, has developed guidelines for the development and implementation of programs of Pharmacovigilance (PV) in order to establish the safety profile of drugs through signal detection and optimize medication management by detecting problems related to use of drugs (Hu et al., 2010).

Effects of ADR

The most frequently observed effects are disturbances of the digestive system, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, headache, fatigue or drowsiness. It would not be wrong to say that adverse effects of drugs reduce the quality of life of patients and it can also causes an prolong hospitalization as well as a significant danger to the life of a patient (Alomar & Strauch, 2012). It is also important to know that adverse reactions may be related to drugs and / or characteristics of the patient and / or interactions between the drug and other drugs and / or products such as food, alcohol, tobacco, etc. If the role of drug is analysed, some side effects are related to the composition and / or characteristics of the drug (Lee, 2006). They are described in a specific section of the manual of each drug. In addition, the peculiarities of the patient are also important in this regard as there are differences in drug response of individuals due to illness, allergies, aging, alcoholism, smoking, drug use, etc. Further, the role of interactions between the drug and other drugs and / or products cannot be avoided as drugs can have an ...
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