Anticholinergic drug use has been associated with a risk of central and peripheral adverse effects. There is a lack of information on anticholinergic drug use in persons with diabetes. The aim of this study is to investigate anticholinergic drug use and the association between anticholinergic drug use and self-reported symptoms in older community-dwelling persons with and without diabetes.
The basic population was comprised of Finnish community-dwelling primary care patients aged 65 and older. Persons with diabetes were identified according to the ICD-10 diagnostic codes from electronic patient records. Two controls adjusted by age and gender were selected for each person with diabetes. This cross-sectional study was based on electronic primary care patient records and a structured health questionnaire. The health questionnaire was returned by 430 (81.6%) persons with diabetes and 654 (73.5%) persons without diabetes. Data on prescribed drugs were obtained from the electronic patient records. Anticholinergic drug use was measured according to the Anticholinergic Risk Scale. The presence and strength of anticholinergic symptoms were asked in the health questionnaire.
The prevalence of anticholinergic drug use was 8.9% in the total study cohort. There were no significant differences in anticholinergic drug use between persons with and without diabetes. There was no consistent association between anticholinergic drug use and self-reported symptoms.
There is no difference in anticholinergic drug use in older community-dwelling persons with and without diabetes. Anticholinergic drug use should be considered individually and monitored carefully.
To evaluate the health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and functional capacity in relation to glycemic control among older home-dwelling primary care patients.
Electronic patient records were used to identify 527 people over 65 years with diabetes. Of these, 259 randomly selected subjects were invited to a health examination and 172 of them attended and provided complete data. The participants were divided into three groups based on the HbA1c: good (HbA1c57mmol/mol (N=29)) glycemic control. HRQoL was measured with the EuroQol EQ-5D questionnaire. Functional and cognitive capacity and mental well-being were assessed with the Lawton Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL) scale, Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) and Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS-15).
EQ-5D scores for good, intermediate and poor glycemic control were 0.78; 0.74 and 0.70, p=0.037. Sub-items of mobility (p=0.002) and self-care were the most affected (p=0.031). Corresponding trend was found for IADL, p=0.008. A significant correlation was found between MMSE scores and HbA1c.
Older primary care home-dwelling patients with diabetes and poorer glycemic control have lower functional capacity and HRQoL, especially in regard to mobility and self-care.
BACKGROUND: Little is known about the diagnosis of head and neck carcinoma in primary care. We sought to estimate the general prevalence of symptoms reported by patients with head and neck carcinomas and to determine the association between detection patterns of head and neck cancer cases in primary care and survival. METHODS: In a cross-sectional survey, we used a questionnaire to estimate the general prevalence of symptoms associated with head and neck cancer from a sample of 5646 primary care visits in 25 randomly selected health centres over 4 weeks throughout Finland. A population-based retrospective cohort study involved the 221 patients resident in one primary health care district (population about 700,000) in whom head and neck carcinoma was diagnosed between Jan. 1, 1986, and Dec. 31, 1996. Data on the initial primary care visit, clinical characteristics and survival were obtained from patient charts. RESULTS: Of 5646 visits to a primary care practitioner, 11% (617) were made because of the same symptoms as those initially reported by patients later found to have head and neck cancer. According to the cohort data, the detection rate of these carcinomas in primary care was 1 per 63,000 visits. At the initial visit of 221 patients later found to have cancer, 56% (123) received referrals, 24% (53) follow-up appointments and 20% (45) neither ("overlooked"). At 3 years, the risk of death was significantly higher among patients whose disease was overlooked (adjusted hazard ratio [HR] 1.89, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.03-3.45). The excess risk associated with being overlooked, however, was confined to subjects with tongue or glottic tumours (HR 4.25, 95% CI 1.59- 11.4) (number needed to harm 3.0, 95% CI 1.9-6.7). INTERPRETATION: Despite the rarity of patients with head and neck carcinoma in primary care, patients with symptoms of these diseases and especially with symptoms of tongue and glottic carcinomas should be initially referred for further care or followed up.