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Discharge Plans for Geriatric Inpatients with Delirium: A Plan to Stop Antipsychotics?

Kim G Johnson, Adedayo Fashoyin, Ramiro Madden-Fuentes, Andrew J Muzyk, Jane P Gagliardi, Mamata Yanamadala
Journal of the American Geriatrics Society 2017, 65 (10): 2278-2281

BACKGROUND: Studies show inpatient geriatric patients with reversible conditions like delirium may continue on antipsychotic medications without clear indications after hospital discharge. We conducted this study to determine how often geriatric patients were discharged on a newly started antipsychotic during admission with a plan for discontinuation of the antipsychotic documented in the discharge summary.

DESIGN: We conducted retrospective chart review identifying geriatric inpatients in our health system started on a new antipsychotic during admission. In patients discharged from the hospital on a new antipsychotic, we examined the discharge summary for a discontinuation treatment plan.

RESULTS: Of 487 patients started on a new antipsychotic, 147 (30.2%) were discharged on the antipsychotic. Of those, 121 (82.3%) had a diagnosis of delirium. Discharge summaries of 15 (12.4%) patients discharged on an antipsychotic with a diagnosis of delirium included instructions for discontinuation of the antipsychotic. Of those patients discharged with instructions for discontinuation, 12 (80%) received a psychiatric or geriatric medicine consult.

CONCLUSION: In our health system, the majority of geriatric patients with delirium, discharged on a new antipsychotic had no instructions outlined to outpatient providers for discontinuation management. Further interventions could target increasing antipsychotic guidance at transitions of care.


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