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Medical status of elderly patients consulting two oral and maxillofacial surgery departments in Germany

  • Frank Halling
    Correspondence
    Corresponding author at: Gesundheitszentrum Fulda, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Fulda, Germany.
    Affiliations
    Gesundheitszentrum Fulda, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Fulda, Germany

    Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, University Hospital Marburg UKGM GmbH, Marburg, Germany
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  • Klemens Weigl
    Affiliations
    Human-Computer Interaction Group, Technische Hochschule Ingolstadt, Ingolstadt, Germany

    Department of Psychology, Catholic University of Eichstätt-Ingolstadt, Eichstätt, Germany
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      Abstract

      An increasing number of elderly patients requires dental care. The data concerning the medical risk profile of seniors consulting dentists are scarce. In this context, the comorbidity-polypharmacy-score (CPS) could be an effective clinical tool to quickly assess the medical status of elderly patients. The medical data from 648 patients (60 years and older) of two cohorts (Fulda group [Fg] and Marburg group [Mg]) from two maxillofacial surgical units were recorded using a standardised questionnaire and compared concerning the number of the regular medications and the CPS. No medication was needed in 57 patients and 311 took 1 to 4 medications per day. Polypharmacy (5 or more medications per day) could be observed in 280 patients. The average medication was 4.28 in the Fg and 4.57 in the Mg groups (p = 0.249). Antihypertensives and antithrombotics were the most common medications. The CPS was subdivided into three groups (minor, moderate, severe). In total, 332 patients belonged to the minor group and 80 to the severe group. The average CPS was 7.49 in the Fg and 7.99 in the Mg groups (not significant). CPS was strongly correlated with age (p < 0.001) but not with sex. The prevalence of elderly patients with polypharmacy presenting for dental care is increasing. Scores like CPS may be a useful adjunct for quantifying the burden of disease in the context of dental treatment.

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