THE ELDERLY AND POLYMEDICATION: HAEMOPHILIACS ARE LESS AT RISK THAN THEIR HEALTHY PEERS

Ageing often calls for the prescription of polymedication, i.e. daily use of a number of different medicines, each one intended for the treatment of a specific condition, such as diabetes and hypertension. Although this strategy often proves to be effective for the management of various potentially equally dangerous diseases, the simultaneous use of a number of medicinal products is not without consequences. Indeed, they may interact with one another and, in certain cases, may cause side effects that are so severe that they exceed the risks associated with the conditions they treat.

However, recent studies have shown that elderly people with haemophilia are far less subject to polymedication than their peers who do not have the disease, and that they are also less prone to the side effects associated with interactions between medicinal products. This would appear to be due to the fact that the management of the health of haemophiliacs, including elderly patients, is primarily assigned to Haemophilia Centres, whose specialised staff tend to prescribe their patients medication with great caution and only after a thorough assessment of the risk associated with the use of each individual medicinal product.

With the constant increase in the number of elderly haemophiliacs, many Haemophilia Centres are already equipping themselves to offer their elderly patients a service that better suits their needs. The on-going progress achieved regarding therapy and disease management now means that haemophiliacs of all ages can count on an increasingly optimistic future and aspire to a long and peaceful life.

 

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