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How to protect those pill-popping punters

So. Our tendency to dish out statins to all and sundry is equivalent to kicking out the Zimmer frame from in front of our more wobbly patients

So. Our tendency to dish out statins to all and sundry is equivalent to kicking out the Zimmer frame from in front of our more wobbly patients

It's true apparently. And those who can spell pioglitazone may be bumping up the fracture risk in their patients. And prescribing inhaled steroid monotherapy to COPD patients increases their chances of pneumonia.

Can you spot the common thread here, dear readers? Of course you can. I realise that iatrogenesis is nothing new. But it does seem ironic that we read more and more about the adverse effect of drugs as our degree of control over prescribing becomes less and less.

I've always considered that one of my key roles involves steering patients away from hospitals unless they really need them. Partly to save my colleagues unnecessary work, but largely to save my patients from unnecessary hospital doctors.

Now I think I shall have to extend this concept, which means protecting the punters from anyone with prescribing rights, or equivalent. In other words, I shall have to keep them away from diabetic nurses, extended role pharmacists, COPD nurse consultants and anyone else with a pen.

The one consolation for any diabetic hypercholesterolaemics with COPD is that they'll die of inhaled steroid-related pneumonia before they get their glitazone-related fractured neck of femur caused by their statin-induced fall. Which I'm sure makes popping all those pills worthwhile.

Copperfield Copperfield

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